BY MYRNE LIVETT
DEPUTY Director Project of Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock, McDonnell Hiva has expressed concern over the lack of technical and advisory services to farmers across Guadalcanal and blamed the provincial agricultural extension officers for not precisely doing their job.
Speaking exclusively to Environment Media, McDonnell Hiva said the role of agricultural extension officers is to consult, advise and train rural farmers to implement appropriate agricultural techniques and practices that will help to maximize yields and profits of farms.
Hiva said the extension officers under the Guadalcanal province agriculture are simply not doing their job to expose new knowledge, information, skills, inputs, and processes to improve the long-term performance of farm businesses across Guadalcanal.
He said the majority of Guadalcanal agricultural extension officers are women and they have the tendency of being reluctant to perform well in their province, even when they’re posted to work in communities on Guadalcanal.
The Deputy Director Project of the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAL) pointed out that the biggest problem now is to post extension officers to work in rural communities.
“The current officers from the Guadalcanal province agriculture division have rarely visited farmers in rural communities, however, they remained only in the urban centers, or provincial sub-stations and have not performed their field work to visit farmers who need advice,” he argued.