By Cecilia Ijuo
Abuja – The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Sabo Nanono, has reiterated Federal Government’s commitment to boosting paddy rice, cotton, and livestock production in the country.
Nanono made this known in a statement issued in Abujanon Sunday by Mr Theodore Ogaziechi, the ministry’s Director of Information.
Ogaziechi quoted Nanono as saying that the government’s commitment would go a long way toward creating more job opportunities, ensuring food security, and increasing Internally Generated Revenue (IGR).
Nanono, according to Ogaziechi, made this known when he visited the Emir of Dutse, Alh. Muhammadu Sanusi in his his palace.
The minister noted that plans had been concluded to distribute more than 10,000 tractors and inputs to farmers in the 774 Local Government Areas of the country
According to him, tractors, fertiliser, chemicals, and other inputs will be distributed to farmers under a soft loan scheme designed to boost agricultural mechanisation.
He said that the gesture was to enable farmers boost their production capacity so that government could mop up excess produce for storage in its strategic reserves.
“What we need is that the beneficiaries must be genuine farmers and indigenes of the participating local government areas.
“The Federal Government will commence implementation of the programme in the second quarter of this year 2020,” he said.
In his remarks, according to Ogaziechi, the emir, who was represented by Alh. Basiru Sanusi, praised President Muhammadu Buhari for his commitment to reinvigorating the agricultural sector.
The emir said that the council had set up a committee to ensure participation in the agricultural transformation programme of government.
He said, “When we heard about the Federal Government’s plans to give soft loans to farmers in the 774 local government areas, we set up an awareness creation committee to mobilise participation in the programme.”
He said that the committee would identify suitable crops in each of the seven local government areas in Dutse Emirate Council for cultivation in commercial quantity.