Wheat farmers seek FG’s aid

Wheat farmers, under the aegis of Wheat Farmers Association of Nigeria (WFAN), have alleged that they have been neglected by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, since Audu Ogbeh took over as a minister.
The National President of the Association, Salim Muhammad, made the allegation, during a chat with journalists, on the current situation of wheat farming in the country. 
He said that it was disheartening that despite the present government’s plan to shift from the oil sector to the non-oil sector, wheat farmers were left without ofl any serious interventions that could boost their production.
“Last year, we cultivated about 600, 000 tons of wheat nationwide and unfortunately farmers were left with their produce, as the market wasn’t favourable and they couldn’t sell at what the market offered then. This development has, indeed, affected this year’s wheat production and from all indications, the production will be lesser than that of last year,” he said.
He added that, though the association had recorded an increase in the number of members, many wheat farmers in Kano State have not gone to farm this season, due to the fact that their last year’s produce was still unsold. 
According to him, wheat production level was at 30 per cent presently, and indicators showed that there w going to be a slight fall in production this year.
Muhammad also said that to make matters worse, the Lake Chad Research Institute (LCRI) that had the national mandate on wheat productio in Nigeria had failed to provide certified seeds to farmers for about three years now.     
“To us wheat farmers in Nigeria, LCRI is dead, because it has failed in discharging its mandate to the extent that wheat farmers have to rely on seeds obtained from the market,”he said.

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