Members of the Oti Region Queenmothers’ Association have started the clearing of a 30-acre land for the cultivation of cassava for industrial purposes.

President of the Association, Nana Otubea II speaking at the farm site at Bodada in the Jasikan District of the Oti Region, said the commodity would be used to feed the agro-industry to be established at Jasikan by the Rawlings’ family.

She said the project was initiated by the Association with financial support from the Rawlingses.

Nana Otubea said the cassava would be processed into gari to be supplied to schools within the Oti enclave.

She said the Association intended to empower women and girls to be self-sustained financially and economically.

Nana Otubea, who is also the Paramount Queenmother of Nkonya Traditional Area, said the Association would also be cultivating oil palm and citrus but wanted to start with cassava farming because it takes less months to mature as compared to oil palm and citrus.

She said they were in touch with the Ministry of Food and Agriculture for the supply of a new hybrid of cassava, which would take five months to mature for harvesting.

The Biakoye District Chief Executive (DCE), Madam Comfort Attah lauded the Association for the good initiative.

She said the project falls in line with the government’s Planting for Food and Jobs concept, and would do everything possible to help sustain it.

She said total development of women and girls in the Oti enclave were crucial for societal development and the initiative was an addition.

Madam Attah promised to liaise with the Minister of Food and Agriculture for the supply of the new hybrid oil palm and citrus seedlings for planting.

The Paramount Queenmother of Buem Traditional Area, Nana Apewbea III appealed to agro-based non-governmental organisations (NGOs), DCEs and Members of Parliament (MPs) in the Oti Region to help achieve their aim of financial independence.

She said the Association with financial support from the Rawlingses would also establish the Agro-Vocational Institute at Jasikan to help train women and girls in employable skills to enable them to be economically and financially viable.

Nana Apewbea admonished the youth in the traditional area to assist in the project and lessen complaints of joblessness.

The Oti Region Queenmothers’ Association with financial support from the Rawlingses family, conceived the idea of the construction of an Agro-Vocational factory and training centre in Oti before the demise of the late former President, Jerry Rawlings.

The Association has acquired 50-acre land at Nkonya and 30-acre at Asato for the Oil Palm and Citrus farms.