Navy officer wins Best Backyard Farmer award

Seventeen years of backyard farming at a naval barracks paid off for a Superintendent of the Naval Dockyard at Sekondi in the Western Region, Commodore Samuel Angmor, when he emerged as the best backyard farmer last Friday.

At the 33rd Farmers’ Day celebration by the Sekondi/Takoradi Metropolitan Assembly, it became evidently clear that Commodore Angmor isn’t only best at safeguarding the territorial waters of Ghana but also better at farming.

From a small start 17 years ago, he now owns different crops and livestock on a quarter of acre land; a feat that won him the Best metro backyard farmer for 2017.

He told 3News his backyard farming has for years given him economic independence because he hardly spend money on in buying foodstuff, noting most of what his family of eight feeds on are harvested from his garden.

On his backyard farming at the naval base is maize, pepper, okro, tomatoes and other crops as well as goats.

Commodore Angmor said he has not bought corn and other food crops since the beginning of the 2017, despite the fall army worm that plagued a lot of farms across the country.

But what would motivate a navy officer to practice backyard farming, a prominent feature of homes in the 1970s, which has over the years become extinct in Ghanaian homes?

“Farming is my hobby and I love greens; that is my motivation. When I realized the land behind my residence at the barracks had not been utilized, I decided to engage in backyard farming. I have maize, pepper, okro, goats, tomatoes and other crops so virtually, I don’t buy so many things to feed my household of eight,” he revealed.

Sharing his experience in backyard farming, he said, it is not something that his colleagues and Ghanaian workers in general who complain about low salaries must consider practicing to augment their monthly income.

“You know people complain that the pay is not good and things like that but I think when you do it, you save a lot. It is not the issue of pay but how you manage the little resources…” he explained.

He said it is not expensive to have a backyard farm, saying “it is not expensive at all. I use my animal droppings as my fertilizer and I also engage the services of the extension officers which is for free”.

For his prize, Commodore Angmor received a certificate, bicycle, Wellington boot, a bag of line, a radio set, two plastic chairs and half piece cloth.

Sekondi/Takoradi Metro Agric Director, Daniel Bentum Essel explained the introduction of backyard farmer award is to encourage everyone to have a backyard farm.
Meanwhile, a 58-year-old crop farmer from Whindo, Kobina Apprey, was adjuged the overall best farmer in the metropolis.He took home a certificate, deep freezer, 10 wellington boots, 10 cutlasses, bicycle, one full piece cloth among other prizes.

Stephen Donkor, a fish farmer from Sekondi and Elizabeth Yankey, crop farmer from Whindo were adjudged 1st and 2nd runner ups. Each of them received farm tools and other items.

In all, a total of 16 farmers including a 50-year-old physically challenged, Efua Akyere, from Whindo were awarded.

Mr. Bentum Essel explained the assembly’s decision to award more than eight farmers as required, was borne out of a move to encourage more people to venture into farming.

The Chief Executive of the metropolis, Anthony K.K. Sam, entreated fishers to desist from the use of light fishing, which he observed, accounts for the “constant depletion of fish stock”.

By Loveridge Ampratwum Okyere||Ghana

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