Staggering torrents of accolades have continued to tumble in on account of President Muhammadu Buhari’s timely inexorable ingenuity in reducing the nation’s rice importation by 90 per cent.
Speaking on the president’s political adroitness, Secretary of the All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN), Kebbi State Chapter, Alhaji Muhammad Idris, said about 150,000 farmers in the state are significantly engaged in rice production, owing to the bold strides taken by the present administration.
Idris made the remark at an interview with newsmen, in Birnin Kebbi, the state capital.
He said: “Our farmers must commend President Buhari for the continued pursuance of his strategic food security programme, which he built around self-sufficiency and reduction of import dependency.
“The programme has brought lots of benefits to our farmers, and the farmers in turn, have contributed to cut-down of rice importation from other countries.”
The secretary further said that farmers in the state got approximately N100 billion loan from the Federal Government in partnership with major banks in the country.
“About 100,000 farmers got loans from CBN in collaboration with Bank of Agriculture, while 50,000 others benefitted from Sterling Bank loan.
“Each of these farmers got about N210, 000 to boost their farming activities.
“Some large scale selected farmers in the state got loan of about N30 million to N50 million each from Umza International Farms Limited,’’ he added.
Idris, however, urged the government to support farmers with modern farming tools, that way, “Nigeria can achieve total cut-down on rice and the importation of other crops.”