FG targeting 60,000 tractors for Agric mechanization ― Minister

The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Alhaji Sabo Nanono said the Federal Government is targeting about 60, 000 tractors to drive the Agricultural Mechanization Programme.

He said the Programme would ensure a paradigm – shift from subsistence practice to commercial agro-industrial farming for food production, procurement of agricultural processing plants, fertilizer production, enhance value chains among others.

Nanono said this while receiving in the audience the Participants of the Senior Executive Course (SEC) NO 43(2021) of the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS), Kuru, Plateau State visited his office in Abuja.

The Minister noted that Mechanization would enhance local technologies evolution with over 600 Private Sector Driven Services centres, equipped, tractors, farming implements, storage and IT Facilities.

He said that agricultural mechanization now revolves around the world, “this would address the challenge of feeding the Nation’s growing population and achieving food sustainability, create jobs for teeming Nigeria Youths and boost the economy.”

Nanono informed the participants of the ministry’s plans to increase agricultural Extension Workers to 75,000 on various value chains for efficient food production and self – sufficiency.

In her remarks, the leader of the delegation and Director, Studies (NIPSS), Professor Olufumilayo Para-Mallam, the Director of Studies (NIPSS), expressed delight to be at the ministry for the interactive discourse on agricultural policies of the ministry.

Professor Para-Mallam added that “the theme for the SEC 43, 2021 as approved by Mr President, is Getting Things Done: Strategies for Policy and Programme Implementation’’, the ministry is critical to sustainable development and diversification of the Economy.”

In his welcome address, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Dr Ernest Umakhihe stated that “Policy and Programme implementation is the nerve of every Government as political leaders translate their wishes, aspirations and promise to the people through the aspect of Governance, especially for a country that has survived the devastation of COVID -19 Pandemic cannot come at a better time than now.”

While giving a review of Agricultural Policies in Nigeria, the Director, Planning and Policy Coordination in the Ministry, Alhaji Zubairu Abdullahi stated that the need of presidential intervention for integrating of agricultural financing and inputs into agricultural value chain development of the Ministry.

He added that Establishing of Food and Agriculture Trust Fund/Agricultural Development Trust Fund to support value-chain development, research and achieve self-sufficiency competitiveness in agriculture and recapitalisation of the Nigerian Agricultural Insurance Cooperation and Bank of Agriculture.

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