These are excellent days for farmers and people in agribusinesses in Kogi State as the State Government has indicated its readiness to encourage programmes that would increase their yield.
The State Governor, Alhaji Yahaya Bello gave the indication on Monday while declaring open a two weeks intensive training for beneficiaries of the Agro-Processing, Productivity Enhancement And Livelihood Support (APPEALS) for Women and Youth Empowerment Project (WYEP).
The Governor was represented at the occasion by the Deputy Governor, Chief Edward Onoja at the training which is taking place at Ahmadu Bello University’s College of Agriculture in Kabba.
The Governor said the Project Development Objective (PDO) was to enhance agricultural productivity of Small and Medium Scale Farmers and improve value addition along priority value chains of Cashew, Cassava and Rice. However, the Women and Youth sub component allows for enhancement across other priority value chains of the project namely; Maize, Cocoa, tomatoes, Wheat, Ginger, Livestock (Dairy), Poultry and Aquaculture.
He said the state government has through the State Ministry of Agriculture, achieved milestones in meeting the initial stipulated conditions for participating in the World Bank programme in Nigeria, stating his preparedness to sustain the record.
The objectives of the programme, he said, shall be achieved through supporting farmers productivity and their linkage to market, facilitating agricultural products and cottage processing, Small and Medium Scale Agribusiness under the project components.
Speaking, the provost of the college, Dr A B Mohammed said the trainees were expected to start their own agro – business enterprises after the training, considering the intensity and quality of training they would be impacted.
She thanked the state government for its support to the body and beneficiaries to ensure agricultural revolution, noting that it was time for the state to take its pride of place in comity of oil producing states.
In his own address, the state coordinator of APPEALS, Dr Sani Abdullahi Ozomata urged the trainees to take the programme serious as it was capable of benefitting them, the state and the country.