The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), on Tuesday, commenced distribution of agro-inputs worth N150 million to farmers affected by the 2018 flooding and erosion in the FCT.
The FCT Permanent Secretary, Mr Chinyeaka Ohaa, at a ceremony to commence the distribution exercise, at Kuje Area Council, warned farmers against engaging in agricultural activities without recourse to proper environmental assessment.
Ohaa said that the arbitrary erection of structures by farmers has, in most cases, impeded free flow of water resulting in overflow of natural water channels and river banks.
He stressed the need for farmers to observe some basic practices that could help minimise the effect of flooding, especially on river banks.
The permanent secretary also enjoined farmers to avoid any form of construction that would impede the flow of water.
“These include planting of cover crops such as legumes or vertiva grasses and allowing crops residues to remain on the soil instead of removing them after harvest.
“This year, we have provided funding worth N150 million for the procurement of a variety of Agricultural inputs to help the farmers across the six Area Councils in rebuilding their lost investment.
“Rice, cowpea, cashew, teak and oil palm seedlings have been procured, while we will also be distributing poultry inputs such as chicks and feeds to the farmers.
Ohaa expressed optimism that the intervention would go a long way in alleviating the plights of farmers, improve their skills and enable them prepare against flooding.
He assured the commitment of the FCTA to implement innovative strategies to support the growth of agricultural sector in line with the policy thrust of the federal government to revitalise agriculture in the country.
He commended the extension workers of the FCT for their efforts in extending training to rural farmers on the adoption of good agricultural practices particularly as it relates to flood and erosion control in farmlands.
“Their efforts have paid off as the incidences in this regard have reduced,’’ He said.
Speaking on behalf of beneficiaries, Mr James Samaila commended FCTA for the intervention which, he said, would go a long way to facilitate quick return to farms and boost farm production in the FCT.
Samaila assured that FCT farmers would do everything possible to avoid engaging in any activity that would trigger flooding in the territory. (NAN)