Farmers get over 1bn fertilizer subsidy

Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal has said that his administration would spend N1.4 billion to subsidise the price of fertiliser for farmers in Sokoto State during the 2018 farming season.
He said so, when he was presenting a bag of fertiliser to one of the beneficiary-farmers at the flag-off of fertiliser sales for dry season farming and distribution of improved seeds to farmers in Sabon Birni Local Government Area.
“We have bought 500,000 bags of fertiliser at the cost of N6,800 per 50kg bag, but we have decided to sell the product to our farmers at the subsidised cost of N4,000 per bag. In all, we are spending the sum of N1.4 billion to subsidise the product.
“This intervention becomes necessary, in view of our determination to boost agriculture in the state and to encourage new entrants into the sector.
“We will continuously explore other avenues to grow the agric sector, bearing in mind that it is the largest employer of labour for majority of our citizens,” the Governor added.
In all, Tambuwal said that the government would buy 25,000 metric tons of fertiliser at the cost of N3.4 billion for the dry season farming alone in the state. According to him, the state government would construct 1,000 tube wells to assist dry season farmers, as a result of shortage of water being experienced at the Goronyo dam.
On seeds, the Governor said that the Ministry of Agriculture had procured faro-brand rice seedlings at the cost of N281 million to be distributed to dry season farmers free of charge, while another N9.5 million worth of seedlings for carrot, onion, water melon and garlic have been bought for the farmers to assist in improving their yields.
“This in addition to payment of N20 million counterpart funding to the State Agricultural Development Project (SADP) for the provision of Tube wells to farmers and motorcycles to monitoring officers in 2017.
“The government has paid the sum of N40 million as counterpart funding to the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and N56 million for the World Bank funded-Fadama III project, which are all aimed at improving farming activities in the state,” he added.
In his remark, the Commissioner for Agriculture, Umar Nagwari, said the ministry achieved 80 per cent of its set target in 2017, and vowed to do more for the benefit of farmers.

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