Kano state government has purchased 5, 000 irrigation water pumps at the cost of N242. 5 million and distributed them free to peasant farmers across the state as part of efforts to revitalize agriculture.
In a speech during the occasion, presided over by the Minister of Agriculture, Chief Audu Ogbe, at Kura town, the state governor, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje explained that “the idea is to make farmers fully embrace irrigation, in line with the Federal government’s policy of encouraging all year round farming”.
Dr. Ganduje said the farmers must embrace mechanized agriculture to fully exploit the state’s abundant but largely untapped water and agricultural resources efficiently for food security and economic empowerment.
He announced that 729 extension agents have been recruited by the state government out of which 400 have been trained for deployment to various local governments, so that they can guide and assist the farmers on best agricultural practices, while the remaining 329 workers would also undergo training soon.
The governor, who presented each of the 400 trained extension workers with a new motorcycles sated that it would enable them reach out to farmers particularly those in remote areas of the state.
He, therefore, thanked SASAKAWA, ICRISAT and IAR – ZARIA, all of them research organizations, for partnering with the state government in training the extension workers at zero cost.
Governor Ganduje dwelt on his administration’s intervention in rice and wheat production to address food and nutrition security as well as to provide raw material for millers in the country.
On his part, the Minister of Agriculture, Chief Audu Ogbe said because it has been envisaged that Nigeria’s population would reach 500 million people by 2050, the country must devote extra attention to agriculture to cope with the situation.
In this regard, he said, “We have work to do and I can see Kano leading the way”, adding that Nigeria has the potential to feed other Africa nations with the right policies and commitment to agriculture.
Also during the visit, the Minister commissioned the Animal Insemination Center at Kadawa in Garun Malam local government area, upgraded by the Ganduje administration following 35 years of neglect, and inaugurated 60 youth who recently returned from a Kano state government sponsored animal husbandry training in Turkey.
Other places of agricultural activity visited by Chief Ogbeh include L and Z Farms, Sahyaz Rice Factory, Kadawa, Dangote Tomato Factory, Kadawa, Kwanar Dawaki Fadama 3 project at Gafan village in Garun Malam local government area and UMZA Rice Mill, Kwanar Dawaki.