Rice produced by farmers in Kano State rose from 692, 481 tonnes to 1, 551, 720 tonnes last year, representing an increase of about 95.2 percent, Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, has said.
The governor dropped the hint during an interactive session on loan recovery, with farmers on the Central Bank of Nigeria/Bank of Agriculture/Kano State Rice Anchor – Borrowers Programme, at Kano Seed Processing Centre, Kadawa, Garun Malam Local Government area, last Saturday.
He said: “Wheat production in the state increased from 9, 495, 024 tonnes in 2015 to 17, 717, 000 tonnes in 2016, showing a swell of 84 percent.”
Also,Ganduje said the bumper harvest recorded last year in Kano showed a significant increase in the production of other commodities, such as maize, millet, groundnut and cow peas, adding that with the government’s commitment, barring unanticipated developments, the output would be multiplied this year.
On impediments to the farmers’ productivity, the governor said: “I have noticed that there are two major issues in Anchor-Borrower Programme.’’
According to him, farmers were complaining that they are not getting the assistance when they needed it, and that this was constituting a major problem and secondly, ‘’those who are involved in the scheme (CBN and BOA) are complaining that farmers are not paying back what has been given to them”.
He promised that these issues, as well as that of availability of input would be addressed, between the government and the banks involved, so as to ensure that farmers get appropriate assistance and other required intervention duly.
The governor directed the supplier providing the government with fertiliser to provide the commodity to the farmers from yesterday (Sunday), assuring that anything the farmers need would be provided to them to ensure a hitch-free productivity.
However, Ganduje urged beneficiaries of the CBN/BOA/Kano state Rice Anchor-Borrowers Programme to ensure that they repay the loan given them accordingly, since it is a revolving facility that will pave way for other farmers to benefit, pointing out that the state is poised to increase its rice production to about half of the country’s rice requirement this year.
He maintained that his administration would concentrate more on agriculture this year to ensure multiplication of farmers output, pointing out that the administration recognises the fact that it must work hard to improve capacity of farmers and address the many factors that contribute to their minimal productivity.
“Economic realities have shown that Nigeria’s future prosperity depends on investment in our farmers, to enable them become well prepared to revamp food productivity, as oil money is no longer coming in as usual”, the governor added.