By: Terver Akase
Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom has announced the payment of 38% subsidy on fertilizer for farmers as the 2016 farming season kicks off in the state.
Governors Ortom who made this known at the official launch of this year's cropping season/fertilizer sales and distribution ceremony which took place at Tse-Ukegher (NYSC Farm) Nyiev, Guma local government area of the state.
He said the State Government had approved the procurement of 5,100 metric tonnes, an equivalent of 170 trucks of assorted brands of fertilizer and 10,000 litres of liquid fertilizer to be supplied directly to farmers by selected competent fertilizer vendors at the subsidized rates.
"In line with the aforementioned, the state's farmers are to visit stores nearest to them in any of the 23 Divisional Agriculture Offices across the state and pay N4,000.00 only per 50kg bag of fertilizer or N2,000.00 per litre of liquid fertilizer", he stated.
Governor Ortom said his administration had also paid the entire counterpart funds required for the FADAMA Three additional financing, explaining that when fully implemented, the programme will impact on more than 5,000 farmers of the state in improving their production capacity, income levels as well as their livelihood.
He disclosed that the State Government had also paid its counterpart funds' requirements for the implementation of the IFAD-Benue State Assisted Rice and Cassava Value Chain Development Programme with 3,000 farmers already taking part in the programme.
He added that the early flag-off of this year's farming season was a deliberate decision of government to ensure that farmers get and apply fertilizer and other farm inputs at the right time.
Earlier, Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources, Mr James Anbua, thanked Governor Ortom for placing agriculture on the priority list of government and affirmed that the opportunity offered by the early launch of the 2016 farming season would be maximised by all stakeholders in the agriculture subsector.
Mr Anbua disclosed that the State Government had approved that 3,750 hectares of land in 11 land development sites be cleared and allocated to farmers this cropping season for massive production of soya beans, beniseed, rice, cassava and yams.
Others who spoke at the ceremony included the Chairman, Benue State House Committee on Agriculture, Hon. James Gbande and the Chairman, Guma local government area, Mr Sam Agah.
Governor Ortom later cut the tape to officially declare open the 2016 farming season and demonstrated the planting of different crops on the farm.
ORTOM FLAGS OFF 2016 FARMING SEASON AS STATE GOVERNMENT SUBSIDIZES FERTILIZER BY 38% FOR FARMERS Reviewed by Link Naija on 07:30 Rating: