Kwara State Governor, AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq has said his administration is committed to promoting food security and regular intake of nutritious foods among citizens.
Governor Abdulrazaq while speaking at the 7th edition of the Nutritious Food Fair organized by the HarvestPlus Nigeria in partnership with the Kwara state government said less than 10,000 farmers of all categories have so far benefitted from its empowerment programmes.
The Governor represented by the Secretary to the State Government (SSG) Prof. Mamman Saba Jibril, noted that the 15 new tractors and two bulldozers the government recently purchased are another testament to his administration’s push for a better change in the agric sector.
“Our administration is committed to food security and empowerment of all categories of farmers, including commercial and smallholder farmers.
“We have recently purchased 15 new tractors and two bulldozers. We also distributed improved seeds, assorted fertilisers and chemicals at subsidised rates to no fewer than 10,000 registered farmers in the state,” he said.
The Governor, who noted that the Food Fair is contributory to the realization of people’s well-being, human capital development and food security, said the government has also heavily spent money for the smooth take-off of Special Agro-industrial Processing Zone (SAPZ) and the establishment of milk collection centres across the state, in collaboration with FRIESLANDCAMPINA WAMCO.
“We are also providing irrigation facilities across the state to support year-round farming activities.
“Our administration has also paid the counterpart funds to secure a smooth take off of the FADAMA NG-CARES programme to cushion the effect of Covid19 pandemic on vulnerable agro-businesses in the State.
“Our participation in impactful programmes like ANRIN, Save A Million Lives, Scaling Up Nutrition programmes is geared towards promoting good nutrition and general well-being of the people,” he added.
AbdulRazaq commended the organizer of the event and the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD); International Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA), and Action Aid Nigeria among other partners that he said are complementing the government’s move for a turnaround in the agricultural sector and agribusiness value chains in the state.
The Fair is themed: Reaching Millions Through Commercial Nutritious Food System – the Role of Biofortified Crops was attended by various dignitaries including Vice Chairman Senate Committee on Agric and Rural Devt. Attahiru Bima; representative of the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Engr. Abdullahi Garba Abubakar; representative of the Minister of Health, Mrs. Yvonne Yinfaowei; Country Manager HarvestPlus Nig. Ltd. Yusuf Dolla Fou’ad; state Commissioner for Agriculture Hon. Saba Yisa Gideon; her counterparts in Tertiary Education and Youth Development, Ibrahim Suleiman Senior and Harriet Adenike Afolabi-Oshatimehin; andTechnical Assistant to the Governor on Agric Abdulqowiyu Olododo.
Royal fathers in attendance included the Olofa of Offa Oba Muftau Muhammad Gbadamosi Esuwoye ll; Olupako of Share Oba Haruna Olawale Suleiman; Olusin of Ijara Isin Oba Ademola Ajibola.
In his remarks, Minister for Agric Dr. Muhammed Abubakar who was represented by Engr. Abdullahi Garba said the paramount goal of the Central government is to attain food security and promotion of nutrition sensitive agriculture in the country.
While commending the state government’s efforts and investments in the sector, the Minister called for an increased campaign on the need for Nigerians to be conscious of what they consume, even as he asked them to be eating indigenous nutritious foods that he said are in abundance in all parts of Nigeria.