Nigeria: Lockdown - Kaduna Govt Eases Restriction On Farmers

The Kaduna State Government, says farmers across the state are free to access their farms in spite of the restrictions of movement occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Hajiya Halima Lawal, Commissioner of Agriculture, said in a press statement issued in Kaduna that farmers should go for land preparations and other farming activities for the 2020 cropping season.

"The ministry, with the support of partners, has deployed fertilisers and other inputs to all the 23 Local Government Areas in the state.

"Similarly, companies that sell improved seedlings and other farm inputs have been encouraged to set up shop at the various fertiliser sales points, enabling farmers to purchase all required inputs in one-stop-shops across the Local Government Areas for time and cost effectiveness," she added.

The commissioner warned against the diversion of the fertiliser being sold to farmers at N5,000 per bag, noting that the government had received reports of some individuals buying up the subsidised fertiliser by proxy.

"These middlemen, through their agents, buy up as many bags of fertiliser as possible, with the intention of reselling above the official price of N5,000."

Lawal said security operatives have been mandated to arrest anyone involved in sabotaging government effort to make fertilizer available at affordable price for farmers.

According to her, the ministry has been running radio and television announcements, advising residents to report all suspicious cases of diversions or any illicit activities.

"Whistle-blowers should remain assured of their anonymity while reporting to these dedicated telephone numbers: 08030453360, 08029133240."

She warned the perpetrators to desist from such unpatriotic acts that posed threat to food security and the economy.

Lawal stressed that in spite of the lockdown, the state government has allowed unfettered movement of agricultural items and inputs, to ensure food availability.(NAN)

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