From Mika’il Tsoho
The All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN) in partnership with Ghas Integrated services limited, inaugurated the distribution of inputs loan to 10,000 farmers.
Speaking shortly after flagging off,
the Minister Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Mohammad Abubakar said the loan will boost the economy through agriculture.
He explained that, the scheme is partnership between the All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN) and a private firm, Ghas Integrated Services Limited, will boost food production in the country.
The Minister who said, President Muhammadu Buhari is interested on the scheme added that the Nigerian economy was no longer a mono-economy, depending solely on oil and gas, as agriculture, in the past seven years, contributes more to the GDP than any other sector.
He maintained that as Federal government’s effort to sustain private-sector-driven intervention in the agricultural industry, a programme called Special Agro-industrial Processing Zones was introduced by president Buhari to invite investors that are agro-allied companies.
Dr Abubakar then said the appeal to the farmers to utilise the loan for approximately for other batch of farmers to benefit in the future.
While making his remarks, the national president of the AFAN, Dr Farouk Mudi, said the private sector involvement in the scheme was to ensure sustainability.
Dr Farouk Mudi, said the scheme would target 10,000 farmers; and it involves, among others, the distribution of about 100 trailers of NPK fertilizers and thousands of bottles of pesticides as loans that must be repaid fully by the farmers.
Also speaking, the managing director, Nigeria Agricultural Insurance Corporation (NAIC), Folashade Joseph, said there was a need for more private sector-driven interventions in the agriculture industry.
Folashade then, urged the farmers to key in into the risk management that NAIC offers, especially as the federal government already subsidised the premium on insurance in the agricultural industry by 50 percent.