The Nigerian government is commencing an all-round farming year using the e-wallet system, from now till May 2017 with the aim to reach between five to nine million farmers with good quality seeds, fertilizers, and pesticides.
CEO of Cellulant Nigeria, Bolaji Akinboro, stated that the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD) have extended her agreement with Cellulant Nigeria Limited for the provision of the Growth Enhancement Support Program (GES) to Nigerian farmers.
He said the GES scheme is actually an economic impetus program as the e-wallet system is a mechanism that propels economic activities into rural areas, adding that government and the farmers will both contribute to the costs of the farming inputs as part of this subsidy scheme.
Akinboro further stated that the programme will annually cover the 774 Local Government Areas (LGAs) in the country, over 95,315 villages and serves 17 million farmers and 2,714 agri-businesses across Nigeria.
He said to efficiently kick off inputs distribution for dry season, training sessions about how to use the e-wallet platform has been organized in all six geopolitical zones in Nigeria.
According to him, the programme which uses e-wallet technology to allot government subsidies, fertilisers, improved seeds, agrochemicals and good farming practices to Nigerian farmers, has been the flagship program of the FMARD in the last four years and the program would have served an average of six million farmers annually by the end of the year.
“Prior to the extension of the agreement, the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari requested for certain improvements to the technology so that it can continue to serve Nigerian farmers better.
“The upgraded technology was field tested with a pool of 500,000 farmers who grew 1.3million metric tonnes of rice and maize from May through September 2016. The approval of the President for the continuation of the program and the retention of Cellulant, the technology provider, has proved that it’s possible for a project that positively impacted on people lives to be passed from one administration to another,” he added.