In an effort to fight the menace caused by locust and other pests the Federal Government has set aside N13 billion intervention fund to help boost farming activities in 12 States of the North.
The states listed by the federal government to benefit from this funds include Sokoto, Kebbi, Zamfara, Katsina, Kano, Jigawa, Bauchi, Gombe, Adamawa, Taraba, Yobe and Borno.
The Director of Information, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Theodore Ogaziechi disclosed this in a statement stating that the intervention fund is to ensure uninterrupted agricultural activities during 2020 farming season, control transboundary pests and minimize the impact of COVID-19 pandemic and boost both nutritional and national food security.
The Minister of Agricultural and Rural Development, Muhammad Nanono, While flagging off the 2020 Dry Season Control of Transboundary MIGRATORY pest at Birnin Kebbi International Airport, Kebbi explained why the government took the decision to release the funds.
According to Nanono due to outbreak of desert locusts in East Africa and the Middle East, which West Africa, where Nigeria is geographically located could possibly have a fair share of locust swarm, hence necessitated the proactive measures to be ready to tackle any penetration of the dreaded pest and also control of all transboundary pests in order to protect the nation’s food system and production.
He said “The present administration under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari is very determined to fight any menace that would truncate the tremendous success recorded so far especially in the agricultural sector.
“The choice of Kebbi State for the flag-off is deliberate, in view of the extensive agricultural activities in the state and the immense cooperation and collaboration of the State government in the implementation of agricultural interventions over the years.”
The Minister applauded the Governor of Kebbi State, Abubakar Bagudu, for efforts made to control migratory pests in the state and helping farmers to actualize their dreams.
He also commended Governors of the frontline States for their collaboration and cooperation with the Ministry towards reducing effect of migratory pests in their states and for protecting farmers’ investments.
Bagudu, in his response commended the vision and efforts of the President for the various agricultural policies and projects to boost food production and security, job creation and diversify the economy.