By Stanley Onyekwere
The Acting Secretary for FCT Agriculture & Rural Development Secretariat (ARDS) Mr. Ibe Prospect Chukwuemeka has reiterated the importance of effective monitoring to the successful implementation of agricultural programmes in the Territory.
Ibe particularly noted that the Administration places emphasis on the monitoring of programmes to ensure the sustainability of all projects and guidance for improvements, so as ensure programmes achieve the desired result.
He made this poiny during a visit to Gwagwalda Area Council, to monitor the progress made by some beneficiaries of poultry inputs distributed by the Agric Secretariat to vulnerable youths and women across the six Area Councils of the FCT.
According to him, the visit was to enable the Secretariat have a first-hand assessment on the impact of its intervention programmes towards the delivery of improved agricultural services to the FCT populace.
The ARDS boss stated that the administration has been championing the implementation of grassroot empowerment programmes that have direct bearing on the lives of less privilege members of the society towards addressing issues of unemployment and poverty.
He cited the example of the recent distribution of livestock and inputs to Pastoralist and Farmers in FCT grazing reserves and the establishment of the FCT Aquaculture and Allied Trades Center for Women and Youth in Kwali, Mr. Ibe
He expressed the hope that the support for the 2000 beneficiaries from the 6 Area Councils in Layer bird production and management will improve the quality of their nutrition as well as enable them to earn incomes from the sales of eggs.
“In order to ensure the success of this programme, the Secretariat provided each beneficiary with a minimum of 20 layer chicks and feeds each. We equally organized workshop for them on how to effectively manage their birds.
“As you can see, from our visit the birds are doing well and very soon the beneficiaries will start earning incomes from the birds”, he stated.
He further stressed the need for residents interested in going into agriculture to organize themselves into cooperative groups, as it will enable them not only pull their resources together in their businesses but enhance their chances of accessing support from financial institutions and other well-meaning organizations.
He however assured that the Secretariat will continue to go round all the Area Councils to monitor the implementation and performance of all other programmes and projects of the Secretariat to ensure that the meet the desired objectives.
One of the beneficiaries at his farmhouse in Gwagwalada Area Council, Mr. Abdulfatah Yakubu, thanked the FCT Administration for the support, which has made him to become more responsible as he spends time in nurturing the birds.
According to him, “The FCT Administration has really tried for us. For me I can say that I have a job. I have been putting in my best in utilizing the skills I have leant to take care of the birds and with their rapid rate of growth, very soon they will start producing eggs which I can eat and sell”
Another beneficiary, Mallam Abubakar Kwarbai from Kuje however appealed to the Secretariat to help them with feeds, as according to him which it’s sold at exorbitant rates in the market.