Ogun State Government has empowered 1,165 rice farmers under its Anchor Borrowers’ Programme across the State with inputs, assuring farmers of more agricultural incentives.
The empowerment took place while flagging off the 2020 Wet Season at Ogun State Agro Services Corporation, Imowo, Ijebu-Ode, Ogun state.
Abiodun who was represented by the commissioner for agriculture, Dr. Adeola Odedina maintained that his administration would continue to give all categories of farmers the much needed support.
He said, ”This programme has become the hallmark of our deliberate focus on agricultural opportunities, which is aimed at supporting farmers and other Agricultural Value Chain actors, as part of our resolve to achieve the State’s Agricultural Agenda of Food Security, Agricultural Industrialisation and Job Creation through strategic partnerships with all agencies responsible for generating Agricultural technology and providing support to farmers”, he said.
Abiodun added that, at the onset of his administration, he made smart decision of enrolling and documenting prospective beneficiaries of available and incoming agricultural opportunities, recalling that on the fourth of May, 2020, he flagged off input distribution, credit and market linkage to 3,500 cassava ABP farmers.
The State helmsman noted that rice is at the centre stage of a similar commodities as cassava, promising that efforts were ongoing to replicate same for maize and cotton value chains among others in the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme.
He urged other farmers to key into the various agricultural programmes of his administration saying, “The Ogun State facilitated Anchor Borrowers’ Programme is exemplary and transparent.
He enjoined participants to take full advantage of supplementary assistance provided by Ogun State Government, and also abide by the terms of engagement of the linkage Programme”.
Meanwhile, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Dr. Dotun Sorunke, said the present administration believes agriculture is one of the areas the state can stand upon to revive the state’s economy.
He urged the beneficiaries to show utmost commitment to farming activities in order to realise government’s drive for food security and job creation.
In her goodwill message, the representative of Central Bank of Nigeria, Dr. (Mrs) Oluyemisi Olukoya, urged rice farmers to live to expectation by using the inputs judiciously so they can refund the loan granted them by CBN.
Also speaking, the Zonal President, Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria (RIFAN), Mr. Victor Korede, appreciated the Federal and State governments for empowering rice farmers, saying this would provide food for Nigerians as food importation has been banned.
Responding on behalf of other beneficiaries, Ogunbanjo Oluwadamilola Sharon, appreciated the State Government for facilitating the grant, expressing the hope that it would further assist them in their quest for fully mechanised rice farming.
Items distributed include knapsack sprayer, water pumps, chemicals, NPK fertilisers, Ofada rice seedlings among others.