Yahaya Bello Administration Partners World Bank To Lift 10,000 Rural Dwellers Out of Poverty

Oyewale Oyelola, Lokoja

Kogi State Government has partnered with World Bank to lift over 10,000 rural dwellers out of poverty under Agro Processing Productivity Enhancement and Livelihood improvement Support (APPEALS) project.

The World Bank Country Director for Nigeria, Rachid Benmessaoud disclosed this on Thursday when Governor Yahaya Bello led Kogi state Economic Team to their office in Abuja.

Kogi State Economic Team during the meeting with World Bank in Abuja

Rachid Benmessaoud noted that The project which will run for seven years aimed at supporting women and youth to boost the production of Productivity of three priority value chains – rice, cashew and cassava. ”Aside from Kogi State, Kano, Kaduna, Enugu, Cross River and Lagos States were selected by the World Bank after a competitive process for the implementation of the APPEALS project.” He added.

Governor Yayaha Bello, multiple approach were adopted in order to contain the backlog using various methods and having qualified for the scheme, not less than 10,000 farmers in Kogi State are to benefit from the $200 million grant of the World Bank assisted Agro Processing Productivity Enhancement and Livelihood improvement Support (APPEALS) project.

According to him, Qualification for the APPEALS Programme is influenced by political will of the various State Governors who qualified for the scheme across the country.

“The project supports the country policy thrusts on food security, local production, job creation and economic diversification. It responds to the recurring issues of low productivity, limited farmers’ participation to agribusiness supply chains, and institutional realignment in the agricultural sector.”Rachid Benmessaoud explained.

El Hadj Adama Toure, Lead Agriculture Specialist at the World Bank was quoted saying “The number of project’s direct beneficiaries is 60,000 individuals, 35 percent of which will be women. Overall, about 300,000 farm household members are indirect beneficiaries.”

The credit is financed from the International Development Association (IDA), the World Bank Group’s grant and low-interest arm. It will be on standard IDA terms, with a maturity of 25 years, including a grace period of five years.

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