The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development , Alhaji Muhammad Sabo Nanono said that the Federal Government is set to commence the livestock pilot scheme Programme, geared towards improving the livestock sub sector to generate revenue and boost the nation’s economy.
The Minister made this known during his working visit to the Executive Governor of Nasarawa state, Engr. Abdullahi Sule, in Lafia, Nasarawa state, today. Nanono said that the state is one of the few states selected by the Federal Government for the implementation of the Livestock Programme. He said, ” the Nigeria livestock sub sector is a national asset worth over N33 trillion that should be encouraged and exploited by Nigerians”.
The Minister said that for the livestock pilot scheme programme in Nasarawa state alone is worth 400,000 euros for a start, adding that Bauchi and Gombe states are also part of the Programme.
On another note, Nanono pointed out that Agricultural Mechanization is a key driver towards ensuring that the country achieved food sufficiency, created jobs and fast tracked economic growth in the country. According to him, “the Agriculture sector is the answer for us, to feed ourselves, feed our neighbours and boost Internally Generated Revenue”.
He also disclosed that the Agriculture Mechanization Programme would soon commence in 632 Local Government Areas across the country, in his words, ” we are waiting for the National Assembly to pass the bill into an Act for effective actualization of the initiative and we will hit the ground running”.
The Minister emphasized that there is need for a robust linkage between Agriculture and the industrial sectors. According to him, “there should be vertical and horizontal value chain, because it will take the teeming Nigerian youths out of the streets and also harness agro processing back into the main stream of our economy “.
In his remarks, the Executive Governor of Nasarawa State, Engr. Abdullahi Sule, said that the Agricultural policies of the state is in line with the economic divserfication policy of President Muhammadu Buhari’s led Government.
Governor Sule said that the State has marshaled out policies and programmes which allows investors to invest in the Agricultural sector, adding that the policies would provide conducive business environment for investors, create jobs and boost the economic growth of the people.
The Minister also visited the Lafia Rice mill in Kilema, where he was impressed with their output and as such promised that the ministry, through the Department of Rural Development, would provide rural access roads and electricity to boost their production, stating that it will improve the earnings of the rice farmers in the community as well as boost the nation’s economy.
In his separate visits to the JICA Rice Incubation Plant and the Fertilizer Blending Plant both at Makurdi road, Lafia, the Minister reiterated the Federal Government’s commitment towards increasing rice production in the country, achieving food sufficiency and exporting same to earn revenue. The Fertilizer Blending Plant has the capacity to produce 70,000 Metric tonnes of Fertilizer per day.
The Minister conducted the inspections in company of Governor Abdullahi Sule and members of his cabinet.
Chief Information officer
For: Director, Information (FMARD)