This Day (Lagos)

12 December 2012

Nigeria: Wamakko - I'm Not Aware of FG's Delivery of 200 Trucks of Fertilizer

Sokoto State Governor, Alhaji Aliyu Wamakko, Tuesday said he was not aware of the 200 trucks of fertilizer reportedly delivered to the state by the Federal Government.

Wamakko made the remark yesterday at the launch of the Accelerated Paddy Rice Dry Season Farming in Wamakko Local Government Area of the state.

The governor maintained that he was not aware that 200 trucks of fertilizer were delivered to the state.

"I don't know the dealers of the fertilizer. I have not seen them and I am not aware of the delivery of the fertilizer by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture," he said.

Wamakko expressed dismay that successive governments had continued to pay lip service to agriculture without showing seriousness in ensuring self-sufficiency in food production in the country.

He lamented that attaining self-sufficiency in food production would continue to elude the country, unless wealthy Nigerians engage in agriculture.

The governor observed that most of the food produced in the country were cultivated by rural peasant farmers, hence the continued reliance of the country on importation of rice.

He noted that the e-wallet system introduced by the Federal Government was fraught with difficulties, as rural farmers cannot read and write let alone be able to communicate with such gadgets.

The governor expressed optimism that the Federal Government's policy in the agriculture sector will lead the country to the desired target of self-sufficiency in food production.

"Nigeria has the capacity to feed itself. We have vast fertile lands for agricultural production but some individuals had been sabotaging government's efforts for selfish purposes.

"So, I am hopeful that this policy of Federal Government will lead to self-sufficiency in food production, wealth creation and jobs for youths across the country," Wamakko added.

He assured the people that the state government had taken stringent measures to ensure that only genuine farmers get fertilizer and other farm inputs for the dry season rice farming.

In a remark, the Minister of State for Agriculture, Alhaji Abubakar Tijjani, said the launch of the dry season rice farming would be carried out in 10 states.

Tijjani explained that 6,000 farmers would be given three bags of fertilizer each at 50 per cent subsidy and extension services for the paddy rice production.

He added that 41,300 hectares of land would be cultivated in the state during the dry season farming.

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