by crossriverwatch admin
Worried by the inability of farmers to access loans and their continuous clinging to outdated farming practices which have kept their productivity low, the Senator representing the Central Senatorial District, Senator Victor Ndoma Egba, Nigeria’s Senate Leader recently organised an outreach where he distributed free agricultural inputs to the farmers.
The outreach assembled farmers from the six local government areas of the district which include Obubra, Boki, Etung, Yakkur, Abi and Ikom, educated the farmers on modern farming skills, application of peptides, herbicides and fertilizers to enable them maximize their output and how to access loans from financial institutions to enable them farm with ease.
The Senator also donated agricultural inputs and improved seedlings for onward distribution to thousands of farmers in the six local government areas that constitute his senatorial district. The items donated include 12,000 yam seedlings, 5000 sachets of rodomil pesticides, 5000 litres of gamalin 500 litres of pesticides, 600 knapsack sprayers and 200 bags of high yield rice seedlings.
The items worth several millions of naira, Senator Ndoma Egba told CrossRiverWatch on phone are for the first phase of the farmers outreach which would be a continuous process to enable the farmers build capacity to produce more food. “The Central Senatorial District is a multi-purpose farming zone with quite a number of agricultural products produced there and to make the farmers produce more we have to strengthen their effort”.
The Senate Leader said he was satisfied with the progress of the programme and response of the farmers towards imbibing new skills and assured that though the exercise that held in Ikom was a pilot project, the frequency will be increased and more agricultural inputs and seedlings given to the farmers. “The Ikom outreach was a pilot scheme but I am satisfied with the response of the famers and then frequency will be increased and the agricultural inputs diversified to meet the needs of the various cadre of farmers in the senatorial district”.
Speaking in Ikom Council Hall, venue of the outreach, the Chairman of Ikom Local Government Council, Mr Ayiba Ayiba Ojong commended the Senator for the farmers outreach program and the items distributed to the farmers and the free medical program for the people undertaken by the Senate Leader.
He called on the farmers to use the items given to them well so that they would maximse their productivity and boost their financial status. He asserted that the outreach for the farmers is a practicalisation of the axiom which states that it is better to teach a man how to fish rather than giving him fish. “The practice where people are given hand outs do much for them but giving them farm inputs and seedlings positions them to farm and earn a better living for them selves and the family”.
The Paramount Ruler of Ikom, Ntulem Peter Njul Eku appealed to the Senate Leader and the Cross River State Governor, Senator Liyel Imoke to assist the famers in the senatorial district by establishing rice and cocoa processing mills to enable farmers add value to their produce before taking them to the market to ensure adequate pricing for their products.
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