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Wet Season: Niger farmers to get subsidised inputs

As farmers begin preparation for the wet season farming, Niger State government said it is planning to procure more tractors and other easy to handle…

As farmers begin preparation for the wet season farming, Niger State government said it is planning to procure more tractors and other easy to handle implement to boost food production in the state.

The Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Musa Salihu Bawa Bosso, said the government was also procuring inputs such as fertilizer and chemicals to be given to farmers as subsidised rate.

The government assurances were coming on the heels or complaints from farmers in the state that the prices of inputs, especially fertilisers and chemicals, have remained unaffordable to ordinary farmers.

“As you might be aware, the state is cultivating 10,000 hectares of land in each of the LGAs. That is 250,000 hectares of land and the state government has already procured farm equipment like tractors, planters, harvesters and other simple farm implements like power tilers for mechanised farming. That’s how ready the state government is to support farmers for the rain fed season.

“And again, the state government would be subsidising inputs for farmers to boost agricultural production in the state. This is not the first time. Last year, the state government gave fertilisers to farmers at 20 per cent subsidy. So, we are quite prepared and we want to encourage our farmers so that they can increase their production and also increase their income in order to solve the issue of food security and achieve food sufficiency for all Nigerians,” he said.

One of the farmers in Gbako LGA, Umar Mohammed, told Daily Trust on Sunday that they were planning to take loans from microfinance banks to buy inputs in preparation for the new wet season farming.

He said though farmers in the state recorded high yield through irrigation farming this year, the rising cost of inputs remained a major source of concern as they prepared for the new wet season farming.

While farmers are waiting for more rain to fall to begin planting, many of them expressed concern that they may not be able to cultivate as many hectares of land as they had wished due to lack of access to tractors and inputs.

 

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