Hopes of farmers in Abodweseso and its surrounding communities in the Assin South District of the Central Region for a bumper harvest were dashed following an invasion by elephants on their farms on Saturday.
Mr Kojo Tawiah, the spokesperson for the affected farmers who confirmed the incident to the Ghana News Agency at Abodweseso said the marauding elephants came from the Kakum National Park Forest extension.
He said the animals in the process of feeding moved beyond their feeding boundaries and destroyed cash and food crops including cocoa farms, yam, cocoyam, cassava among others.
The angry farmers, expressed concern about the rampaging elephants who occasionally visit the area particularly in every January-February to cause mayhem on farms and uproot trees to block roads and damage aquatic lives and habitats.
Mr Tawaih said the situation posed a serious threat to food security, human lives and a disincentive to farm, especially among the forestry boundary farming communities.
He said all efforts to get the Game and Wildlife Service who were the Managers of the forest reserve to put in place measures to stop the animals from coming to the area have proved futile.
Other affected farmers called on the Government as well as the Game and Wildlife Department to act with immediate effect or they would have to gun down the animals to save their farms and the emerging threats to food security in the area.
“We won’t sit down for the elephants to destroy our crops which are nearing a level where we can harvest. It is very sad for our crops to be destroyed just like that when that is what we rely on to take care of our family, pay school fees and pay other bills” they said.
The aggrieved farmers said the destruction was one too many for them to keep ignoring over the years as they struggled to survive by growing other crops like plantain and cassava alongside the cocoa but all were destroyed by the elephants.
“We sometimes have to risk our lives by confronting the elephants with sticks. We beat drums, blow whistles and very loudly knock noise making objects to scare the animals from eating our crops”.
The farmers are calling on Government and Ghana Game and Wildlife Service to come to their aid and take immediate steps to remedy the situation.