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.
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.
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.
FCTA Provides Effective Agricultural Support Services, Begin Update Of Database Of Farmers In The Territory
The federal capital territory have designed a template to tackle unemployment and as part of measure to address specific areas of need towards the provision of effective and robust agricultural support services, particularly in the aspects of input and extension services, the FCT Administration has begun the process of updating database of farmers and all agriculture-related institutions in the territory.
FCT Minister of State, Dr. Ramatu Tijjani Aliyu, who made this disclosure at the opening ceremony of the Agribusiness Innovation Conference and Expo held at the International Conference Centre Abuja, also stressed that as part of efforts to upgrade agricultural infrastructure, the administration had embarked on the rehabilitation of old facilities while efforts are being made to establish new ones.
Aliyu, however, acknowledged that despite the important roles that farmers play in the quest to eliminate hunger, the agricultural sector was faced with so many challenges, including; lack of information on good agricultural practices, insufficient financial support, access to inputs, storage and processing facilities, pest infestation, access to markets as well as improved technology.
She said the administration has adopted strategies to overcome these challenges and restore agriculture to its prime position.
Some of the strategies adopted according to her include keying into the various federal government agricultural initiatives such as the Accelerated Agricultural Development Scheme (AADS), the National Agricultural Land Development Authority (NALDA), the National Livestock Transformation Plan (NLTP), amongst others.
“On the implementation of the Central Bank of Nigeria, (CBN) funded AADS, all the six Area Councils of the FCT, as well as participating farmers and off-takers have been fully mobilised and are ready for the take-off of the programme at the start of the 2021 dry season farming”, she added.
Earlier, the Ag. Secretary FCT Agriculture and Rural Development Secretariat, Malam Ishaq Abubakar Sadeeq, described the theme ‘#End Hunger: “Building A National Resilience For Sustainable Food Security” as apt considering the fact that the country more than ever before was in dire need of the participation of key stakeholders in enhancing agribusiness for increased food security and employment.
He noted that the FCT was not just about infrastructural development, as the Administration has been giving due attention to the agricultural sector in order to meet the needs of the growing population of FCT with food and nutrition.
Sadeeq said the administration has been implementing programmes aimed at making agriculture attractive to the populace and investors particularly in the areas of agricultural value chains development.
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