ABUJA- The National Agricultural Land Development Authority (NALDA) has promised to install three rice processing mills in Adamawa State in a bid to assist farmers to add value to their rice produce.
Prince Paul Ikonne, Executive Secretary of NALDA, made this pledge in an interactive session with farmers in Adamawa State.
Ikonne said NALDA had recently recovered its 4,000 hectares of farm estate in the State as well as got additional 5,000 hectares of land in Fulfulde through donations.
He assured that these hectares of farm lands would be put into good use immediately.
As part of measures to economically empower farmers, Ikonne said the era of middlemen coming to buy off farm produce from farmers at ridiculous prices was over, as the Authority would buy off their produce at reasonable prices.
His words: “I am here in Adamawa State with a message from Mr. President, the message which says, ‘go to all the communities, develop their land and make the people rich.’
“The only way to achieve that in all the communities is through agriculture, and if it is through agriculture, and we are all farmers, that means this message is for us.
‘NALDA is back to make millionaires in all the communities in the country.
“We have discovered that the people that make money from farm produce are not the farmers. We want to change this sad scenario.”
Commenting on the programmes of NALDA for rice farmers in Adamawa, Ikonne said capacity building would be provided for them as well as land preparation and soil test.
“We have been made to understand that Adamawa produces a lot of paddy rice that goes out to be processed somewhere else, so NALDA is bringing processing mills that will be in three different locations in order to process and give value to their produce.
He further assured that NALDA would provide improved seeds to farmers to ensure bumper harvests.
In his remarks, the Governor of Adamawa State, Ahmadu Fintiri, commended NALDA for the bold initiatives while calling for stronger synergy between the Federal and State governments for the overall interests of farmers.
The Governor who was represented by
Commissioner for Agriculture, Dr Dishi Khabe, said the idea behind the initiatives was to ensure self-sufficiency in food production and guarantee food security.
He assured that the state government was committed to supporting NALDA in all areas of its endeavours to achieve resounding success in the State.