FG to expand RAAMP to 36 states, trains staff

Rural Access and Agricultural Marketing Project

THE Federal Government says it plans to expand the Rural Access and Agricultural Marketing Project (RAAMP) to the 36 states of the federation.

Mr Aminu Mohammed, National Project Coordinator of RAAMP, disclosed this during the agency’s annual retreat and training of staff in Calabar which took place from Jan. 11 to 13.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the aim of RAAMP is to provide access roads in rural areas to boost agricultural marketing.

Mohammed said RAAMP was poised at making remarkable impact across the country, hence the need to extend the project to all states.

He expressed delight over the increase in the number of participating states to 20, noting that the successes recorded from the project’s commencement in 2008 in Cross River and Kaduna paved the way for its growth.

He urged participating states to be more active in implementing the project, to would enable them to access more funds to expand their rural road infrastructure.

“Some of the state project coordinators are doing very well; all hands must be on deck to achieve the goals of the project because there will be more funding if we are able to do the job well.

“We are looking at making the project multi-phased and also introducing technology in its implementation because we believe that we will achieve more using technology,” he said.

Gov. Ben Ayade, while declaring the event opened, called on the staff of the project to put national interest above their ethnic, religious and political inclinations in the discharge of their assignment.

The governor was represented by Dr. Inyang Asibong, Commissioner for International Donor Cooperation.

Ayade described RAAMP as a multi-dimensional project capable of positively changing lives, especially those of rural dwellers.

He promised to keep supporting the vision of RAAMP in its aim to make life more meaningful to rural dwellers across the country.

Mr Olatunji Ahmed, the World Bank Tasks Team Leader, also allayed fears of the challenges that might hinder the smooth running of the project.

He assured the staff of the readiness of the bank to ensure a seamless implementation process.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the staff were trained on project management, team building in service delivery and Systemic Tracking of Exchanges in Procurement (STEP), amongst others. (NAN)