Wednesday, May 10, 2017 7:32 pm
African Young Farmers Association (AYFA), an NGO, says it has introduced Maize Farming Agricultural Investment Scheme for civil servants and those interested in agriculture in efforts to boost maize production.
The National President of the Association, Mr Bakare Oladimeji, said this in an interview with News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Wednesday.
He said that the scheme was specifically developed for people who had interest in agriculture but had no time to engage in farming.
He added that such people would pay a stipulated amount of money for the maize production, while the association would take care of the production.
“The primary objective of the scheme is to mobilise massive investments for crops growing so as to effectively tackle the problems of food shortage and inadequate raw materials for our agro-based industries.
“We intend to provide Nigerians, especially the working class, the opportunity to generate additional income and create wealth through investment in agricultural production.
“The implementation of the scheme is simple. The association provides the farmlands and coordinates the maize production, while the investor provides the funds for the production.
“The investor pays N205,000 for one hectare of maize farming, which is the minimum; the investor will receive N322,000 after 120 days, irrespective of the outcome of the yield.
“This implies that the investor will be making a profit of N117, 000 on the investment of N205, 000 over a period of 120 days without any physical labour and stress.
“The profit of N117, 000 is about 58 per cent of the investment capital.
“You will agree with me that this makes sense, you cannot make N20,000 from any bank, even if such money is in a fixed account for 120 days,’’ he said.
Oladimeji said that the association would provide the farmlands, farm inputs and all the production processes before harvesting and selling the farm produce.
“In a nutshell, 60 per cent of the profit goes to the investor, while the association takes only 40 per cent,’’ he said.
He said that the association had earmarked farmlands in suitable locations within the FCT and adjacent areas in Nasarawa State for the implementation of the 2017 edition of the scheme.
According to him, all the farms set aside for the scheme will be provided with adequate and effective security by working closely with the heads of the communities.
“The scheme commenced in 2016; with the second edition, which is scheduled to take place between May and August, Nigeria will no longer keep importing maize,’’ he said.
Oladimeji said that necessary precautions would be put in place to mitigate possible risks, adding that all the maize production ventures would be adequately insured by reputable insurance companies.
He also said that the association has secured a good working relationship with reputable suppliers of inputs and off-takers, in the lead-up to the implementation of the scheme.
He, however, said that a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) would be signed with each individual investor, to further assure the investor of the association’s commitment in the enterprise.
Oladimeji encouraged the citizens, particularly civil servants, who were looking for alternative sources of income to key into the project.
“All they need is to put in their resources for our organisation to manage; they will smile to their banks with good profits.
“We also intend to introduce similar schemes on soybean, rice, cassava and beniseed soon,’’ he added.