STATE NG-CARES UPDATE: KATSINA GOVERNMENT SUPPORTS 3,010 FARMERS UNDER NG-CARES PROGRAM
Katsina state government has supported 3,010 farmers on various interventions under the Nigeria COVID-19 Action Recovery and Economy Stimulus, NG-CARES programme.
The Coordinator of the FADAMA CARES Component of the programme, Mas’ud Banye disclosed this on Friday in Katsina after inspecting some farms under the programme to assess the level of implementation.
Banye said the support, provided by the World Bank as loan through the Federal Government, and distributed free to the farmers by the Katsina Government, was targeting 22,000 farmers in the state.
According to him, the programme provides assistance to poor and vulnerable persons to enable them to recover from the losses incurred from the COVID-19 pandemic.
He explained that the programme had provided assistance to 1,650 maize and sorghum farmers and given various farming inputs to 1,350 poor and vulnerable farmers in the state.
“Each maize farmer was given 10 kilogrammes of maize seedlings, three bags of NPK and one bag of Urea Fertilizers as well as herbicides and pesticides.
“Similarly, each sorghum farmer was given 10 kilogrammes bag of seeds, two bags of NPK, a bag of urea and a gallon of liquid fertilizers.
“The farmers were also exposed to intensive capacity building while extension agents were dispatched to their various farms to guide them.
“The farming implements given to the 1,350 farmers include thrashers, knapsack sprayers, food packaging machines and Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) to prevent them from coming into contact with harmful chemicals.”
He added that women and physically challenged persons constituted 40 per cent of the beneficiaries in all the interventions under the Area II component of the NG-CARES programme being coordinated by the FADAMA Office.
According to Banye, the programme will run for a period of two years, divided into four cycles of six months each.
“Poor and vulnerable farmers will be selected in each cycle and we always go to the grass root communities to select real farmers that will make the maximum use of the interventions,” he said.
The Chairman, Bindawa Local Government Area, Badaru Musa, said dozens of farmers in the area already benefited from the programme which had enhanced their farming practices.
He explained that at least 500 farmers’ associations in the area have registered into various cooperatives ready to receive support from the FADAMA CARES Programme.
At Yanmagajin Yamma community in Bindawa area, the chairman of the farmers’ cooperative, Malam Bello AbdurRahman, said 100 sorghum farmers in the area benefitted from the assistance.
While commending the state government for providing them with the free intervention, he explained that they were clustered in groups of 10 for the programme in the area.
Malam Saminu Bala, the Chairman of the farmers in Kadanye Sabonlayi, Caranci local government, said the intervention helped them to recover most of the losses they recorded due to the lockdown in 2020.
In Kankia, the official in charge of the FADAMA CARES project, Hajiya Farida Badamasi, explained that 40 per cent of the beneficiaries in the area were women selected from agrarian communities affected by the lockdown.
The Coordinator’s team also inspected the fisheries component of the NG-CARES programme at the Goruba Fish Farmers office in Katsina.