To ensure that only genuine farmers benefits from the distribution of agro-inputs across the country, the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security has affirmed that stringent measures has been put in place in the forthcoming dry-wet season farming for rice, maize, and cassava, to ensure transparent distribution. The Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, Senator Abubakar Kyari, dropped the hint when he received the Governor of Sokoto State, Dr. Ahmad Sokoto, who paid a courtesy visit to the headquarters of the Ministry in Abuja.
He called for collaboration with states, local government areas, traditional leaders, non-governmental organisations and relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) of government to ensure smooth distribution of the farm inputs across the country. Kyari said that the President was concerned about the capacity of farmers to access agro-inputs even at the current subsidised rate, as observed during the last intervention for the Dry Season Wheat Production Programme. He said that further support to farmers was underway, stressing that the ministry was poised to implement programmes in line with his vision for the agriculture sector. “We are determined to driving agricultural transformation, enhancing productivity and ensuring that our farmers have the necessary support to thrive”, he said. The minister urged states to scale up the number of extension agents while prioritising the capacity and well-being of the existing ones to boost food production across the country.
The Governor of Sokoto State, Dr. Ahmad Sokoto, said the agriculture sector had experienced remarkable achievements in the state since his assumption of office. He explained that the state government had distributed assorted fertilizers to farmers for free in all the 23 local government areas of the state. On the issue of insecurity, he stated that the state government had introduced measures to checkmate the heinous activities of bandits. Speaking further, he stated that more than 15 trucks loaded with fertilizer were arrested, as they were engaged in the diversion of the farm input to the neighbouring countries. The governor said the state government had established a committee to collaborate with the Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy to register genuine farmers, to resolve the nagging issue of fertilizer diversion in the state.