Minister of agriculture and rural development, Dr. Mohammad Abubakar has said that Federal Government’s collaboration with the donor assisted projects have paid off by resulting in the development of more agri-business hubs in Nigeria. Dr. Abubakar stated this in Abuja while inaugurating the National Steering Committees of the three donor assisted projects; the Rural Access and Agricultural Marketing Project (RAAMP), Agro-Processing Productivity Enhancement and Livelihood Improvement Support Project (APPEALS), and Agricultural Transformation Agenda Support Programme Phase-One (ATASP-1), jointly funded by the World Bank and African Development Bank.
The committees, which are chaired by the minister himself, and his minister for state, Hon. Mustapha Shehuri as alternate chairman, is expected to assist in addressing the challenges bedeviling the projects, consider and approve the Annual Work-Plan and Budget (AWPB) and support on policy matters and general oversight of the projects amongst others. The minister noted that the committees were significant to track the progress towards Federal Government’s policy in the area of provision of food security, job creation, youth empowerment, rural development and general economic diversification.
The minister added that, “It is pertinent to mention that the collaboration and partnership existing between the donor assisted projects have yielded a remarkable result in the development of agri-business hubs in Nigeria. I am optimistic with the caliber of men and women we have in the various committees, I can see justice done for the approval of the AWPB of the five projects. This inauguration today marked a significant milestone in the implementation of development partner support projects in the agricultural sector, over the years, projects have been without steering committees making it, difficult to effectively tract their performance, the members are expected to sit back, consider, and approve the 2022 AWPB”.