Farmers in Akyem Adukrom and Odumase near Kibi in Abuakwa South Municipality of the Eastern Region are up in arms with an unknown owner of cattle destroying farms in the area.
The over 150 beef cattle have been grazing on crops on subsistence farms in the communities under the intimidation of persons purported to be operatives of National Security.
About 30 aggrieved farmers told Kasapa News, the cattle have been destroying their crops since they were brought to the community two years ago by some faceless individuals allegedly using armed national security operatives to intimidate them claiming the cattle belong to the President.
The farmer took Kasapa News to large acres of Maize, vegetable, plantain, cocoyam, cassava, and cocoa destroyed by the cattle.
“The cattle have destroyed my maize farm, my cocoa trees, I couldn’t harvest maize so my family is hungry. Look at me, 80-year-old man farming yet people bring their cattle to destroy my farms. They say it is for the President but I don’t believe it because the President won’t do that,” Padi Tetteh, octogenarian farmer lamented.
Some women smallholder farmers including Margaret Awaku, a widow lamented how the cattle destroyed their vegetable and maize farms afflicting hardship on their families.
“I am a widow, I can’t do galamsey .So I farm but the cattle have destroyed my maize farm. Whenever I see the destruction I become embittered. So government should intervene to relocate the cattle from this area. My children are starving” Awaku bitterly said.
“The cattle have destroyed our farms but whenever we complain they threaten us that the cattle belong to the President. Will the president feed us? we are not able to harvest more beans because the cattle jolt through the cocoa crops destroying the fruits. The Fulani herdsmen taking care of the cattle threaten farmers” Grace Adwoa Baby, a farmer lamented.
For Razak Yakubu, he has been arrested many times by armed men alleged to be national security operatives and Police for continuously protesting and allegedly attacking cattle found on his farm.
“Whenever I protest and chase the cattle in my farm, armed Police and persons claiming to be national security operatives attack me, just two weeks ago, three armed Police personnel came to my house at dawn to arrest me that order from above that I have poisoned their cattle which I denied. The president should come out if the cattle belong to him because that is what they are claiming.”
The Odikro of Akyem Adukrom Moses Cudjoe said illegal mining has destroyed lands in the area, therefore, managing with few arable lands available to farm hence the presence of the cattle will affect the livelihood of the farmers, therefore, the cattle must be relocated from the area.