Ganduje unveils $95m Kano Agro-pastoral development

Kano State governor, Dr Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, on Thursday, formally unveiled the $95 million Kano State Agro-Pastoral Development project (KSADP), a flagship project of his administration.

Ganduje disclosed this at the project’s start-up workshop at Tahir Guest Palace in Kano, stated that its aims are to enhance agricultural productivity and competitiveness through access to input and credit, value addition and market access, extension services delivery and capacity building.

According to him, it is chiefly financed by the Islamic Development Bank and the Life and Livelihoods Fund (LLF), a development initiative through which the bank and other organizations provide concessional financing to its member countries.

He added that the objective of the project, expected to be implemented within a five year period, is to contribute to reducing poverty and strengthening food security in the state, which is the most populous in Nigeria, by developing agro-pastoral production systems.

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His words: “The KSADP will provide the much-needed solution to farmer-herder conflicts, unfettered nomadism as well as enhance the development of pastoral communities”

“I want to believe that only projects such as this one that can curb farmers-herders’ clashes and security risks, improve farm yields, accelerate livestock production through adoption of modern best practices to generally improve the economic potentials of our smallholder farmers,” Ganduje added.

“The project will improve the capacity of our herdsmen to produce and process more milk and pave way for quality beef production. We are of the belief that because of the security implication of nomadic lifestyles such as farmer-herders clashes and the fact that the old system of cattle rearing is more cultural than economic; things must change,” he stressed.

Governor Ganduje added: “We decided to create Ruga settlements in our forests such as Dansoshiya and with the help of this IDB supported project, we are going to make them full-fledged grazing reserves.”

“I understand that through this project, the Dawanau International grains market, the largest grains market in West Africa will be upgraded through the provision of essential infrastructure that will help in improving its status as a foremost market. This is in consonance with our desire to promote food crop marketing and market access for our farmers,” the governor enthused.

Dr Ganduje assured that his government will ensure timely release of this counterpart fund of $5 million to facilitate smooth implementation of the project.

In his remarks, the Manager, Islamic Development Bank, Regional Hub of Abuja, Mr Mayoro Niang, explained that the project is aligned to the bank president’s five-year plan and the federal government’s Economic Empowerment and Poverty Reduction Strategy.

“This five-year project will contribute to poverty reduction and to strengthen food and nutrition security of the vulnerable population in Kano State through sustainable development of livestock and crop selected value chains,” he emphasized.

On the workshop, Mr. Niang said it is to ensure that the quality of the project is maintained and to guarantee proper orientation on its specifics, under applicable policies and procedures of the bank.

However,  Mr Jena Jacques, from the Lives and Livelihood Funds, said his organisation, a partner of the Islamic Development Bank Group, is glad to work with the Kano State government to make a positive impact on the lives of the poor.

“The fund is delighted to support not only Kano State but also other IDB member countries to address community health, agriculture and basic infrastructure challenges,” he stated.

He, however, maintained that “our concessional financing comes with obligations including abiding all our rules and regulations, accurate procurement plan, clear disbursement plan and having maximum project impact, among others.”

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