Samples of the items distributed to the farmers.

Cecilia Onah, Lafia

To ensure food security and to cushion the effect of flooding currently ravaging many states in the country, the Federal Government in collaboration with the International Fund for Agricultural Development, has distributed farming inputs to 363 farmers in Nasarawa State.

Speaking at the distribution exercise in Lafia, the National Programme Coordinator of the FGN/IFAD Value Chain Development Programme, Fatima Aliyu, said the gesture was also aimed at ensuring that farmers across the benefiting Local Government Areas are able to boost their capacities and cultivate enough food for residents of the state during the rainy season.

Fatima, who was represented by one of her aides, Hamza Shehu, added that the initiative would help the farmers to alleviate their sufferings, and enable them enhance productivity during the farming season.

“I am delighted to be at the special occasion of the 2023 wet season distribution of agric inputs to VCDP farmers. Let me sincerely commiserate with some of the farmers who have lost their livelihoods due to the floods in some areas and other climate conditions.

“We believe that this support by the FGN/IFAD VCDP will go a long way in assisting our farmers to recover from their losses and restore their livelihoods,” she added.

READ : Flooding: Nasarawa begins clearing of drainages

In his speech, the Permanent Secretary, Nasarawa State Ministry Of Agriculture and Water Resources, Isa Mohammed-Eya, called on the beneficiaries to utilise the inputs to achieve the best results, and commended the FG and IFAD for initiating the programme.

The Permanent Secretary, who was represented by the Deputy Director, Agric and Engineering Services, Solomon Abundaga, assured of the state government’s commitment to continue to give the needed support to the FG and IFAD to ensure the success of the programme in the state.

“Let me encourage our smallholder farmers in the five benefiting LGAs of Lafia, Doma, Wamba, Nasarawa and Karu, to fully deploy the knowledge you have acquired through the VCDP over the years, to surmount the challenges of unstable weather conditions, floods, pest infestation, birds invasion, among others during the farming season,” he added.

Earlier in her welcome address, the State Programme Coordinator of the FGN/IFAD VCDP, Eunice Adgidzi, mentioned the inputs to include 1,800 kg of improved rice seeds, 1,650 bundles of cassava stems, 402 bags of fertilisers (NPK and Urea), and 156 litres of selective and non-selective herbicides.

One of the farmers who spoke on behalf of the others, Bala Umbugadu, thanked the FG and IFAD for supporting them with the farming inputs and promised to use the items judiciously.