From Yakubu Mustapha Minna
The Nigerian Incentive Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending (NIRSAL) under the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in partnership with Niger State Government is to acquire additional 200 tractors.
This is even as it has expended N65.63 billion for 61 projects in 11 states of the federation.
Managing Director and COE of NIRSAL, Aliyu Abdulhameed made the disclosure yesterday while on a courtesy visit to Niger state governor at Government House, Minna saying that the partnership was toward the development of agricultural mechanization sector.
He said that about 185,000 persons have been trained so far by the organization for Agricultural Extension Officers and bankers for its programmes in the 11 states of the federation aimed at transforming agriculture in to agribusiness in Nigeria.
Abdulhameed further explained that the organization will also involve in auditing, inspecting, acquiring and maintenance of equipment in the 25 local governments as well provide technical and financial support to boast production.
He added the actualization of mechanization of agricultural sector would surely boast agricultural economic output calling for the commitment on the part of leadership who are accountable to ensure the success of the structural partnership which will include tractor services for the farmers especially in the rural areas of the state and Nigeria.
On his part, the Niger state Governor, Alhaji Abubakar Sani Bello decried that over 9 million hectres if land are available in Niger state currently but only 500 hectres are been cultivated hence the need for partnership for optimal utilization of its lands.
Bello, however, appreciated the partnership reassured of better relationship to actualize the objectives of the programme in Niger state charging them to take advantage of the state 19 irrigation sites that are not put into use especially for its value chain scheme hence to improve rural farming and boast the economic base targeted at rice production.
He said that the establishment of a well-structured maintenance workshop will assist in ensuring the life span of equipment like tractors and heavy duty vehicles in the state and urged farmer to take agriculture with seriousness while he applauded NIRSAL for its capable hands who will assist in the realization of value chain in the country.