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Lagos empowers 20,000 fisherfolks, farmers

State Commissioner for Agriculture distributing inputs to farmers. Photo:Omolara Omosanya/Radio Nigeria

The Lagos State Government on Thursday began the free distribution of agricultural inputs and production assets to 120 fishing and farming clusters/communities across the twenty Local Government and thirty-seven Council Development Areas of the State. 

The provision of the agricultural inputs and production assets is part of the year 2022 Agricultural Value Chains Enterprise Activation and Farmers’ Support Programme.

At the take-off of the programme in Ikorodu Division, the State Commissioner for Agriculture, Ms. Abisola Olusanya announced that over 20,000 fisherfolks and farmers across the State would benefit from the programme while budgetary provision has been made to accommodate a larger number of Value Chain Actors in the 2023 edition.

Ms Olusanya said the mode of distributing the items was changed to a communal basis to meet the needs expressed by fisherfolks and farmers prior to the implementation of the programme which is in its second season under the Babajide Sanwo-Olu administration.

“We decided to change the direction around it stemming from the feedback that we received particularly prior to the elections, going round different communities and localities, we realized that a lot of things at the grassroots level was not as it should be and we felt that we needed to make amends”.

”So rather than farmers coming to us at a centralized location, like we did during the maiden edition under this administration, we will be going round the local Governments this time around and addressing the particular needs of the farming communities/clusters,” she said.

On his part, the Special Adviser to Governor Sanwo-Olu on Agriculture, Rice Mill Initiative, Dr. Rotimi Fashola appealed to beneficiaries to make judicious use of the items towards the overall development of Agriculture in Lagos State.

He said “This programme commenced in 2014 and so far, a total of 16,466 farmers, fishermen, agro-processors, butchers and marketers have benefitted from its implementation with corresponding impacts on agricultural productivity in the State”

The Ayangburen of Ikorodu, Oba Kabir Shotobi commended the State Government for the programme and expressed pride in the large number of farmers in the Division.

Reporting by Omolara Omosanyo; Editing by Fany Olumoye and Annabel Nwachukwu