-says Project Coordinator
May 17, 2017 By Ibrahim Tarawallie
Project Coordinator of the Smallholder Commercialization and Agribusiness Development Project (SCADeP) has stated that the intervention of the project would help in improving agricultural productivity and access to markets for small holders that produce rice, cocoa, palm oil and poultry.
In January this year, the SCADeP project was unveiled at the Bintumani Hotel in Freetown, seeking to promote agricultural productivity through improved access to markets and finance for farmers.
Being implemented by the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Food Security and other key line ministries, with a $55million funding from the World Bank and the UK Department for International Development (DFID), the project would help to build links between smallholder farmers and selected agribusiness firms and other firms, who buy from small holders in the country.
During a media orientation hosted at the Hill Valley Hotel in Freetown on Monday (May 15), Sulaiman Sesay stated that the five-year programme will improve the lives of 50,000 people, of which 40 percent would be women and youth farmers.
He disclosed that the $15million support from DFID will fund the rehabilitation of over 500 km of feeder roads in selected areas in the country, with high potentials for agricultural production, processing and marketing.
Because smallholder farmers are the drivers of many economies, Mr. Sesay reckoned that they could therefore play an important role in livelihoods creation and household food security amongst the rural poor.
He urged the media to help them explain detail of the project for the next five years and what they stand to benefit to improve their lives.
According to the Grants Manager, Alimamy Kargbo, SCADeP funding mechanism will take three prong approach; the Agribusiness Services Matching Grant, Agricultural Loan Scheme and Sierra Leone Agribusiness Development Fund (SLADF), which would be managed by KPMG.
Also speaking, Kweku Fraser from KMPG stated that SLADF is a financing mechanism that would provide agricultural financing to agribusinesses and their out-growers.
He said beneficiaries would be agribusinesses operating a structured out-grower model, medium and large scale investor farmers with commercial operations, adding that they can access up to $1million funding.