Wednesday, May 4, 2016 10:58 pm
Nigerian rice and wheat farmers said today that they are now treated with some respect and royalty, as Nigerian banks court them for business.
Malam Aminu Goronyo, the President of the Rice Farmers Association said this courtesy only began with the coming of the Muhammadu Buhari administration.
He told vice-president Professor Yemi Osinbajo and Governor Atiku Bagudu of Kebbi state today at a meeting with members of his association and wheat farmers that before the coming of the Buhari presidency, “farmers in Nigeria were considered useless people on the streets, but now farmers are kings.”
As a proof, he said that banks were now soliciting farmers to open accounts, even offering banking services on the farms.
He added that people were also offering farmers credit lines for purchases.
“We have not been having this kind of respect before, we have become kings today,” Goronyo stated.
The President of the Wheat Farmers Association of Nigeria, Malam Saleh Mohammed, said many rice farmers were also wheat farmers, adding that the productivity level of both sets of farmers had already gone up.
An elated Osinbajo said the Buhari presidency has a clear idea on how to execute its agricultural policy to achieve self-sufficiency in food production.
The vice president praised rice and wheat farmers, saying “farmers are among the most important people in Nigeria today.”
Osinbajo said by launching the CBN Anchor Borrowers Financing Initiative in Kebbi, and launching the dry season rice and wheat farming last year, what the President did was setting-off an agricultural revolution without saying so.
He added that the President’s action also “showed he had a clear idea of how to execute a formidable agricultural policy.”
According to Osinbajo, “the President said it throughout the campaigns that pursuing an active agriculture policy in rice and wheat would be important”.
Gov. Bagudu observed that the political will of the Buhari presidency in supporting rice and wheat farmers is “energising,” the agricultural sector, raising the esteem of the farmers and heightening productivity.
He said that Nigeria would be self-sufficient in rice production under two years and in wheat within three years.
In their remarks, the presidents of both associations expressed satisfaction with the support rice and wheat farmers are now receiving from the Federal Government.