Gov. Sheriff Oborevwori of Delta says the state government will disburse two billion naira Special Agricultural Intervention Fund to farmers this month.
The governor disclosed this on Wednesday after inspecting the Accelerated Agricultural Development Scheme (AADS) at Mbiri Farm Settlement and the Agro-Industrial Park, Aboh-Ogwashi in Ika North-East and Aniocha South Local Government Areas.
BRANDPOWER reports that Mbiri Farm Settlement houses 30 greenhouses for the cultivation of tomatoes and other vegetables, while the Aboh-Ogwashi is for rice milling and other grains processing.
The governor said that his administration would continue to improve on the agricultural value chain to ensure food security and job creation in the state.
“If you go through my MORE Agenda, I said that there is going to be sustainable agriculture sector reforms. I also said that the agricultural value chain will be sustained.
“And seeing what the immediate past administration has done here, it gladdens my heart.
“The commissioner for agriculture has briefed me that we have this kind of farm settlement in the three senatorial districts.
“We are going to support them because we have N2 billion Special Agricultural Intervention Fund and we will disburse that money within this month.”
On the state of the access road to the farm settlement, Oborevwori said: “We will work with the Ministry of Works to see how we will manage this road to enable us to take these produce out.
“I asked a question on how many tonnes of tomatoes we can get in each of the green houses and I was told that it’s about three tonnes.
“So, you see that out of the 30 green houses we have here, 11 are already cultivated and that will give us about 33 tonnes of tomatoes.
“You see, our people go to the North to get tomatoes and this place has been existing for some decades now.
“So, this farm settlement is a very good choice to do this green house planting for the production of tomatoes and other vegetables”.
He added, “People erroneously think that we are an oil- producing state and so we can depend on only the oil. No, we cannot depend on oil alone.
“With the removal of oil subsidy, we should also encourage our people to go into farming because it will help us.
“Food security is very important. Our people consume a lot; so, we must make food available and that’s why I have come here.”
He pledged to provide access roads and other key infrastructure to boost food security and job creation for the people at the Agro-Industrial Park, Aboh-Ogwashi.
He added that his administration would work with the project Consultant to ensure its prompt completion for the benefit of the state and the country.
Earlier, the state Commissioner for Agricultural Development, Mr Perez Omoun, said that under the AADS, state government had established three greenhouse farms at Mbiri, Kpakiama and Deghele across the three senatorial districts of the state.
The Obi of Mbiri Kingdom, HRM Obi Ifeanyichukwu Alekwe II, thanked Gov. Oborevwori for personally coming to visit the community and for the project being site in his domain.
He, however, appealed to the governor to construct access road to the settlement and to establish a college of agriculture in the community.