The Federal Government will commence the implementation of the Growth Enhancement Scheme (GES). This is to get subsidised farming inputs to farmers in the southern part of the country. The rains will soon start falling in the Southern part of the country where farmers rely heavily on rain- fed agriculture.
Addressing newsmen in Abuja at the weekend, the director in charge of fertilizer at the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Dr. Akinbolawa Osho, said three states in the North – Kogi, Kwara and Taraba – have been added to the southern states to start off the programme because they often experience early rains.
“We are not reaching all the farmers in the country. We are reaching specifically all the farmers that we have been able to register in our data bank. So far, we have been able to register 10.5 million farmers which means that all these farmers are entitled to subsidised inputs at the various redemption centres in all the states,” Osho said.
Mr. Osho also expressed the fact that the Ministry of Agriculture is hopeful to meet the Seed and Fertilizer requirements of at least eight million farmers registered with the ministry.
The subsidized inputs ensures that farmers will have to pay 10% and 20% cost of seeds and seedling respectively this year 2014 farming season.
“In fact, by the time we get two bags each of fertiliser to each of these farmers, we are talking about – giving them improved seeds of rice, maize, sorghum, we are dealing with – it will really translate into a lot of increase in production of these crops,” he stressed.
We at Belvyna Global strongly appreciate the fact that provision of inputs is starting early enough. It is envisaged that farmers would have done some level of land preparation before they obtain the seeds and fertilizer required for actual production.
We hope the ministry has fine-tuned the logistic requirement of ensuring about 8 million farmers in Southern states in addition to Kogi, Kwara and Taraba from the North and middle belt areas of the country procure seeds and fertilizer they require in the right quantity, amount and place.
From our correspondent.