In line with its promise to ensure successful implementation of the Anchor Borrowers Programme (ABP), the Ogun State Government and stakeholders of the programme have agreed on production cost of commodities.
The Special Adviser to the Governor on Agriculture, Dr. Adeola Odedina, who disclosed this at the Town Hall Meeting for stakeholders of the Programme, at the Tech Hub Complex, Kobape, Abeokuta, noted that ABP is a one-stop shop that would resolve issues for farmers through provision of loans by the Central Bank of Nigeria.
He stated that the meeting addressed the strategies on how farmers would make profit from ABP and repay the lent money, for the State to achieve food sufficiency and engage its youths, adding that CBN would link farmers to credit, inputs and ready markets while fertiliser, cost of transportation, scaring birds on rice farms and farmers equity would also be taken care of.
“The focus of agriculture in the State is to link farmers to industries, and get raw materials from them and the Government cannot do it alone, that is why we are doing the Public Private Partnership. We have off-takers to procure cassava from the farmers, as the CBN is ready to make the State a model for cassava production in Nigeria, as the success of the State in cassava production would be replicated in other states in the country”, Dr. Odedina submitted.
The Chairman, ABP Steering Committee, Prof. Bola Okuneye noted that the committee had done the necessary paper work to have a successful scheme in the State, revealing that the essence of the meeting is to establish a window between the farmers that are buying and those that are supplying them.
He said the meeting became imperative to ameliorate the problems faced by farmers and ensure increased productivity by bringing the major stakeholders together.
Representative of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Dr. (Mrs.) Yemisi Olukoya, noted that the Central Bank would provide access to affordable loans for farmers, as well as assurance of a ready market.
“The committee is expected to feed the apex bank on what the cost of production is, the expected yield and the interest rate and consider the Agricultural Insurance Corporation, for the farmers to know their profit margin, the variety of what they want to plant and the cost of clearing.
A rice farmer from Ijebu-Igbo, Mr. Isola Olusegun, while appreciating the State Government for the Programme, expressed satisfaction with the meeting, as it strives to improve farmers’ profit margin with appropriate delivery of inputs, fertilizers, chemicals and seeds were as well as the timely completion of the mechanised aspect by the ABP, advising his colleagues to make judicious use of the financial support and make repayment as and when due.
Press Officer, Ministry of Agriculture