FCT Minister of State, Dr. Ramatu Tijjani Aliyu, has revealed that the administration has identified agro-industrialisation as a fast-track means of boosting agricultural productivity and food security, as the sector would create thousands of jobs for the teeming and increasingly restive youth population in the territory.
The minister also said the administration’s commitment in this area was evidenced in the level of preparedness for the establishment of a Special Agro-Industrial Processing Zone (SAPZ) in livestock production, processing and marketing.
Aliyu, who stated this commitment while speaking on the FCT Administration policy framework for agriculture at the 8th Feed Nigeria Summit, also stressed that the FCT-SAPZ would provide the avenue for harnessing the territory’s vast agricultural land resources to trigger massive grassroots development, prevent farmer-pastorialist resource-sharing conflicts and make the FCT a new livestock production hub in the West African sub-region.
Represented by the Ag. Secretary FCT Agriculture and Rural Development Secretariat, Mr. Prospect Ibe, the minister said, the SAPZ would also improve and modernise livestock productivity for national food nutrition security by making available quality and price competitive beef and dairy products for local and export markets.
Her words: “In the FCT-SAPZ, we plan to integrate crucial aspects of livestock production, processing and marketing as practiced in advanced countries.
“To actualise this, we are working with local and multinational companies and investors in the sector including; FrieslandcampinaWamco Plc, Nestle plc, L&Z integrated farms, HSP Global, and a number of other consortia led by American and Brazilian farmers to establish ranches and processing facilities. Other investors are billed to bring in global logistics expertise to create an all-inclusive hub of industrial prowess”.
While commending members of the Feed Nigeria Summit for providing a unique platform for stakeholders in the sector to track and support the efforts of governments at all levels, Aliyu, however, lamented that the Nigeria’s agricultural sector has been adversely affected by the outbreak of COVID-19 Pandemic.
In his remarks, chairman central organizing committee, Feed Nigeria Summit, Prof. Eustace Iyayi, said the Federal Capital Territory’s policy framework for agriculture has been recognized as one of the most consistent policies in agricultural transformation in the country, with the objective of integrating food security, job creation and sustainable agriculture into the FCT’s wider economic policies.
He added that with keen focus on agro-industrial revolution, the FCT has consistently demonstrated commitment to the economic development of its people, stressing that the FCT focus was in line with the agro-industrialization mandate of the current government through the Special Agro-Industrial Processing Zones.
Kogi set to host 7th APEALS World Bank Project Mission.
Idris Ahmed, Lokoja.
The Agricultural Processing, Productivity, Enhancement And Livelihood Improvement Support (APPEALS) project, Kogi Coordinating office, has concluded arrangement to host the 7th World Bank Mission visit slated for December 6th 2021.
Kogi state Project Coordinator of APEALS, Dr. Sanni Abdullahi Ozomata, told newsmen at the Reberton Hotel, Lokoja, venue of the pre mission visit conference on Wednesday, that officials from the relevant agencies, departments, organisations and stakeholders have met in Lokoja to fine-tune final arrangements.
According to Dr Ozomata, the National Coordinating Office of APPEALS, Project Coordinating Office of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Lagos State Project Coordinating office and World Bank Representative were in Kogi state to see for themselves, the extent of progress achieved so far.
He said 4 groups of officials set up across the state led the visitors to all the Project sites which were found satisfactory for the Mission visit.
On food security, the Project Coordinator, said that 1700 farmers have benefited from various interventions and have improved their livelihoods and also disclosed that the interventions from the state government has made farmers happy
He said the interventions which were for cashew, rice and cassava, have since upgraded the status of Kogi cashew farmers who have now learnt how to export their products to foreign buyers.
The APPEALS is a World Bank assisted project for the Agricultural Processing, Productivity, Enhancement and livelihood improvement of especially rice cashew and cassava.
The project is also to enhance the Agricultural productivity of the Small and Medium scale farmers and Improving value addition along priority value chain of Rice , Cashew and Cassava.
Nigerians Urged to farm to support Buhari’s Govt. To Improve on the economy of the Nation
The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Mohammad Abubakar, has urged Nigerians to farm as a way to support the Muhammadu Buhari regime to improve the economy.
Mr Abubakar made the call Saturday on the second day of his familiarisation tour of some agricultural facilities in Kaduna.
According to him, agriculture was a lucrative business, with the capacity to attract funding from both local and foreign governments as well as organisations.
However, he said some stakeholders were sabotaging the government efforts by hoarding farming equipment.
“I have seen equipment in the stores that should have been distributed to end users instead of being laid fallow and left to decay.
“We cannot let situations like this continue to happen because we do not want to hurt anybody.
These people benefiting from hoarding equipment and agricultural inputs are hurting a lot of farmers and the economy of the country.
“So I am not afraid to do what is right and we will do what is right to change some of the narratives of hoarding agricultural inputs while showing the people that the government is doing its best to improve the lives of Nigerians,” he said.
Cotton Farming Commences In Kogi, 250 Hectares Of Land Cultivated.
Idris Ahmed, Lokoja.
Cotton Producers and Merchants Association of Nigeria, (COPMAN), Kogi state chapter, has commenced cultivation and farming of cotton at Ejiba, Yagba West local government area of Kogi state.
Over 250 hectares of land has so far been cultivated and the improved seed of cotton from India have been planted.
Coordinator of COPMAN in Kogi state, Mallam Azeez Danladi, told pressmen on Tuesday after an Inspection of the farm by officials of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) that the association needs another 150 hectares of land for extension of the projects in Kogi state in view of the success so far recorded.
Danladi explained that Nigeria agricultural sector has become attractive, as raw materials needed to feed textile industries can now be produced locally and soon be exported for foreign earnings.
While commending the Central Bank of Nigeria for the Anchor Borrowers programme to boost agriculture across the country, the Coordinator also appealed to youths to take to farming, not only to feed the nation, but to also feed local industries with raw materials.
Mallam Azeez Danladi also appealed to the Kogi state Governor Alhaji Yahaya Bello, to encourage the cotton project in the state by making cultivable land available for massive production of the commodity.
He sought the assistance of both the federal and state ministries of Agriculture to provide inputs and accessories to encourage the farmers.
The officials from the CBN expressed satisfaction with the progress made by the cotton farmers and promised to expedite actions that will assist them to achieve the objective.
It would be recalled that Nigerians have advised to agriculture as a means of diversifying economy, after so much depending on petroleum.
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