Saturday, March 2, 2024

FG trains, empowers 250 Nasarawa farmers with fertilisers, seeds

The permanent secretary described the level of poverty in Nigeria as alarming

• February 8, 2024
Nasarawa State logo
Nasarawa State logo [Credit: Wikipedia]

The Federal Government has trained and empowered about 250 smallholder farmers in Nasarawa State with farm inputs under its National Poverty Reduction with Growth Strategy programme.

Speaking at the one-day event on Wednesday in Lafia, Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security, Temitope Fadeshemi, said the initiative was aimed at addressing poverty.

Mr Fadeshemi said an estimated population of 88. 4 million people in Nigeria were living in extreme poverty, noting that 12. 9 per cent of the global population in extreme poverty was found in Nigeria as of 2022.

He stated, “The level of poverty in Nigeria is alarming. This is why the Federal Government through the Ministry of Budget and National Planning in collaboration with FMAFS is making conscious efforts at reducing the spate of poverty across the country.’’

The permanent secretary who spoke through the NPRGS state coordinator, James Jolly, said that the majority of the beneficiaries were given farm inputs to boost agriculture production.

Mr Fadeshemi said NPRGS in collaboration with the Federal Department of Agricultural Extension Service diligently selected approximately 250 farmers for participation in the programme.

“Today marks a significant milestone in our collective commitment to uplifting the lives of smallholder farmers and fostering sustainable agriculture practices. These farmers are not just the backbone of our agricultural sector but are the heartbeat that forms the heartbeat of our nation’s prosperity,” he said.

According to him, NPRGS reflects the government’s commitment to addressing poverty at its roots, emphasising the pivotal role agriculture plays in economic growth and development.

“Through initiatives like today’s training and empowerment programme, we are sowing the seeds of positive change, ensuring that smallholder farmers have the knowledge, resources and support needed to thrive,” he said.

Also speaking, Nasarawa State Commissioner for Agriculture, Umar Dan’ Akano, said that the NPRGS initiative was in line with the vision of the state government on food security and poverty reduction.

The commissioner, represented by the Director of Veterinary Services, Dr Abdullahi Musa, disclosed that the state government had approved the vaccination of animals to boost production.

On his part, Programme Manager, Nasarawa Agricultural Development Programme, Emmanuel Alanana, commended the Federal Government for the initiative and called on the beneficiaries to make judicious use of the farm inputs.

Some of the beneficiaries, Musa Saidu, Beatrice Simon and Ibrahim Mohammed expressed appreciation to the Federal Government for the gesture while calling for its sustenance.

The items given to the farmers include organic fertiliser, knapsack sprayers, herbicide improved rice and maize seed,

Others are chicks, fish and chicken feeds, tomatoes, okra and pepper seeds among others.

(NAN)

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