Food security: Nasarawa govt charges private sector to invest in agriculture

From Esther Akaa, Lafia 

Nasarawa State government has called on the private sector to invest in agriculture, in order to make the sector regain its full pride as the corner stone of Nigeria’s economy.

Governor Abdullahi Sule made the call on Thursday at the annual National Agricultural Show, organised by the National Agricultural Foundation of Nigeria, held in Karu Local Government Area of the state.

Sule, represented by the state Commissioner of Agriculture and Water Resources, Nuhu Oshafu, stressed the need for stakeholders to intensify efforts towards agricultural practices to ensure food security in the country.

He explained that his administration has evolved new techniques that will enable the elimination of major production constraints and was mobilising, sensitising and empowering small, medium and large scale farmers with a view to achieving optimum productivity and creating a mechanised farming environment in the state.

“This administration has continued to subsidise fertiliser and other farm inputs for optimum productivity and by extension encourage our teeming youths to venture into agriculture as an occupation.

“Government is committed in creating employment opportunities for the youths as well as enhancing agricultural production that will serve the double purpose of providing food security and value chain in addition to the national economy, in recognition of the fundamental role agriculture plays in the nation’s Gross Domestic Product.

“Our administration has also created enablement which attracted development partners such as Dangote Group of Companies, AZMAN Farms, Flour Mills, Golden Penny, among others to the state,” Sule said.

The governor further stated that his administration was constructing and rehabilitating  both urban and rural roads with the view to providing necessary infrastructure and social amenities such as water, electricity, vocational trainings among other to encourage agriculture among youths.

He, therefore, commended the National Agricultural Foundation of Nigeria for its consistence in organising the annual event, describing the effort as impetus to all stakeholders to intensity efforts towards agricultural practices.

In his remark, Chairman, All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN) in the state, Mr Samuel Meshi, decried the low turnout of participants at the programme, given the fact that the agricultural show was a national event.

“This event is not viewed as a local event of Nasarawa state but it is a national event. All other states should be encouraged to participate because if you look at it now, we just have about two or three states that are here,” he said.

He, therefore, appealed to Nasarawa government to subsidise high cost of fertiliser inputs, improve security for farmers and mitigate the impact of flooding in the state.

The Voice reports that the 2022 National Agricultural Show with the theme “Small Holder Farming: The Challenges of Climate Change, Insecurity and Production Costs” was attended by stakeholders in the agricultural sector and farmers across the country.

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