Niger Gov Invites EFCC, ICPC To Monitor Distribution Of Fertiliser, Others

In a bid to check diversion of farm inputs, Niger State governor Mohammed Umaru Bago invited the Economic and Financial Crime Commission EFCC and the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission and Other Related Offences (ICPC) to monitor the distribution of farm inputs purchased to boost agriculture in the state.

Governor Bago said in an attempt to boost agriculture, the government is set to purchase 300 new tractors and targets 180,000 bags of fertiliser for this farming season.

He stated this yesterday while he flagged-off the 2023 farming season, sales and distribution of fertiliser as well as other agricultural inputs to farmers in the state at a subsidized rate.

The event which took place at the farm centre in Minna, the state capital, he stated, was aimed at boosting agricultural activities and guaranteeing food security in line with his administration’s policy thrust on agriculture.

He said the bank details, and BVN of individuals will be taken into consideration saying “ we have invited the EFCC, ICPC, and also the police to make sure that this is done rightly, we are bringing subsidy in agriculture and it must be sustained.”

Bago said in view of his administration’s resolve to maximize the agricultural potentials that abound in the state, the Niger State Agricultural Mechanisation Development Agency (NAMDA) formally known as Agricultural Development Projects (ADP), will be revived with the procurement of 300 tractors out of which 10 will be given to each of the 25 local government areas of the state.

While calling on the relevant MDAs responsible for the distribution to ensure equitable distribution, Governor Umaru Bago said each of the beneficiaries is entitled to 10 bags of the fertiliser, warning that security operatives have been directed to deal decisively with anyone found wanting.

He said 60,000 bags of the fertiliser have been provided for a start, and that 120,000 more bags will be provided as the distribution continues.

“This is our way as a government to encourage farming and agriculture in the state. We must gravitate from subsistence agriculture to commercial agriculture. We have put in place structures and machinery for distribution. We have made it a policy that only 10 bags can be sold to an individual,” he declared.

The permanent secretary, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Idris Usman Gbogan had earlier explained that the state government has approved a 20 percent subsidy of 100 trucks (600 tonnes) of fertiliser and that each bag of 50kg of fertiliser will be sold at N18,000 as against the open market price of N24,000 to N30,000.

He said the sales will be done in the designated stores across the state adding that internal control mechanisms are in place to ensure that only resource constrained farmers benefit.