By Auwalu Yusuf
No fewer than 45,000 registered rice farmers across 34 local government areas of Katsina would benefit from Federal Government’s anchor borrowers agricultural programme under the current farming season in Katsina State
Alhaji Shuaibu Wakili, the State Chairman of the Rice Farmers Association (RIFAN) made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Daura on Saturday.
He said out of the total number, 15,800 farmers had been formally captured as distribution of the agricultural inputs commenced last Friday and others to follow soon.
He said the farmers were provided with inputs that included fertiliser, water pumping machines, herbicides, sprayers, improved variety of seedlings and other relevant items to boost their productivity.
He added that the number of cultivable land hecter registered against an individual farmer or group would determine the quantity of the inputs to be received.
“We provide 6 bags of fertiliser per hecter, 30kg of improved seedlings, 1 water pumping machine and seven liters of herbicides,” he said.
According to him, the association has so far received 700 million naira cash and 3,227 bags of paddy rice as loan repayment for the 2018 dry season farming.
He also revealed that they were intensifying efforts to recover the loans so that others could benefit.
He stressed that his office through lawyers had recently started issuing demand notice to defaulting farmers to hasten up or risk formal prosecution in the law.
Wakili lauded the efforts of the Federal Government and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for introducing the programme.
He said within its three years of existence, it had boosted food security, generated millions of employment and turned thousands of farmers into millionaires.
He attributed the success recorded by the programme to the timely supply of agricultural inputs to farmers by the apex bank.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) had earlier reported that the rice farmers association in Daura LGA had registered 1,480 rice farmers for the current season farming.