GABRIEL Okenwa, Executive Director of Partnerships and Strategy of Bank of Agriculture (BOA), says that the inauguration of the 2019 National Farming Season, will hold in Abia.
Okenwa made this disclosure when officials of the bank paid a courtesy visit on Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia, in Government House, Umuahia on Friday.
He said that the decision was informed by the successes recorded by the state government, in the production of cash crops and horticulture in Abia.
Okenwa explained that the National Farming Season was an annual event organised to boost agricultural productivity in the nation.
He said that the bank would disburse a farming loan of N250,000 to properly documented small holder farmers, through their cooperative societies during the inauguration.
Okenwa said: “The inauguration of the farming season, is being organised in conjunction with Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
“We are involved in financing all facets of the agricultural value chain.
“These include implementation of agricultural programmes, which include distribution of over N98.6bn under the CBN Anchor Borrowers program,N3.4bn Mechanisation fund, and N2.6bn cassava development fund.
“It also include N10bn establishment of six rice mills in the country. We are poised to participate in the CBN palm oil intervention programme, which is predominantly in the Southeastern part of Nigeria, which will run into billions, ” he said.
He commended the state government for the efforts it had made, in readiness to ensure a successful hosting of the programme in Abia.
He said that the bank was willing to partner with Abia government, adding that it had established its presence in Umuahia, Obehie, as well as Isuochi, and plans were underway to open more branches in Abia.
In his speech, Gov. Ikpeazu said that the state government would not relent in evolving programmes and policies that would boost agricultural production in the state.
The governor, who was represented by his deputy, Mr Ude Oko-Chukwu, said that the present administration was committed to promoting ventures that would yield food security in Abia.
He expressed the readiness of the state government to ensure the success of the inauguration of the 2019 National Farming Season in Abia, and inaugurated a Six-man committee to plan the event.
Ikpeazu charged members of the committee to work assiduously to ensure that the purpose for organising the event would be realised.
In her response, Mrs Uzoamaka Ikonne, the Chairman of the 2019 National Farming Season Inauguration Committee, expressed gratitude for the opportunity to serve.
Ikonne expressed hope that the programme would open more frontiers for agricultural development in Abia and the nation at large.
“We understand the ernormity of the task because of the desire of the state government to boost IGR through agricultural production.
“And we pledge to discharge our responsibilities effectively, for the maximum success of the programme. We will partner with stakeholders,” she said.
The News Agency of Nigeria(NAN), reports that the members of the committee are: Mr Ernest Onyeukwu, Mrs Ifeyinwa Uwasomba, Mrs Ezinne Otuka, Mr Bartho Onyemaobi and Mr Alozie Anyim.
– June 7, 2019 @ 17:45 GMT |