Abdoulie G. Dibba The President of the North Bank Region Nerica Rice GrowersSAMBOU DAMPHA Association, Sambou Dampha, disclosed to Farmers’ Eye that the current rainy season is promising to those who have seeds on time and also land to cultivate.Mr Dampha made these assertions in a telephone interview on Friday, 14 August, 2015 with this columnist as he later embarked on an assessment of the impact of the rains on the current cropping season so far. According to Mr.Dampha, his association received their rice seed in the month of August which he described as late. He stated that the best time for farmers to receive seeds are in the months of May or June. This is what is known as timely availability of seeds, he added. NBR Nerica Rice Growers Association’s President noted that with the timely availability of seeds, a farmer will be confident of the hectarage he or she will have to clear for cultivation and make preparations for the farming season; otherwise it will turn out to be a gamble. Apart from the seeds, the other constraint that farmers are facing in this region is salt intrusion into rice fields, he said. Dampha added that salt intrusion has led to scarcity of rice fields in the region compelling many farmers not to cultivate their requirement. According to Sambou Dampha, the salt intrusion has penetrated the rice fields of Jajary, India, Illiassa, Juman Sarr, Jali Kunda, Alkali Kunda, Kachang and other catchment areas. He pointed out that the salt intrusion into the rice fields is a great threat to rice self-sufficiency in the region because the region has no irrigation scheme for rice production. He called on the Government and non-governmental organisations to come to their aid by intervening to prevent the salt intrusion. In conclusion, Dampha thanked the president for his Ramadan gift to the Gambian people in the form of sugar and rice and prayed for his long life and good health.]]>

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