Edo govt begins distribution of inputs to farmers
The Edo State Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security on Tuesday began the distribution of inputs to farmers in the state for the 2023 farming season.
Items distributed included a cassava mobile processing machine, fish smoking kiln, Fish vat (mini tank); wheelbarrows; fertilisers; rice seeds; herbicides; pesticides and vaccines for livestock.
The State Permanent Secretary, Mr Sunday Erhunmwonsele, who flagged off the distribution on behalf of the state government in Benin, said that the distribution situated government plans to ensure food security and create awareness of the various government interventions in the state.
He noted that the distribution of inputs was also to encourage farmers to improve their agricultural practices, increase food production and create wealth for themselves.
“Today, government is providing this support and would also provide off-takers to buy off the produce after harvest. Those that will benefit today have been carefully selected. They have been in the farming business for decades. Today is just the flag off, the inputs will be taken to the various local government for distribution,” he said.
He assured the farmers that government would also provide extension services to help to guide them through the farming season and urged them to make judicious use of the inputs.
Also speaking, the representative of the National Special Programme For Food Security (NSPFS), Ibrahim Iro, said the fertilizers and seeds were provided under the Federal Government livelihoods support programme.
Iro noted that the inputs would be distributed to vulnerable farmers who were selected based on comparative advantage and vulnerability to flood in 12 states.
According to him, “12 states were selected by the NSPFS in collaboration with the federal ministry of Agriculture and rural development. Two states from each of the geo-political zones: Borno and Yobe from North-East, Kwara and Benue from North-Central, Kaduna and Katsina from North-West; Lagos and Ondo from South-West; Edo and Cross River from South-South and Enugu and Abia States from South-East.”
He added that the fertilizers and seeds were expected to assist the vulnerable farmers to produce more and create wealth for themselves.
Also in his goodwill message, the Rev Canon Sam Aisien, a consulting agronomist, Okomu Oil Palm Company PLC, commended the state and the federal government for the kind gesture.
Aisien, however, warned farmers against the purchase of oil Palm seedings from the roadside adding that, the seeds were usually not fruitful.
He disclosed that Okomu had a nursery of over 870,000 oil palm seedlings with a maturity date of two and half years to be distributed to farmers at subsidised rates.
The State Chairman of the All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN), Alhaji Bako Dogwo, thanked the ministry and urged them to profile farmers through the association.
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