By Abdallah el-Kurebe
Under the Growth Enhancement Support Scheme, GESS, farmers in Sokoto state are to enjoy the supply of 14,800 metric tones of assorted fertiliser from the Federal government.
This was disclosed during the launch of the state fertiliser distribution exercise by the Minister of State for Agriculture, Alhaji Bukar Tijjani at Bodinga, Bodinga local government headquarters of the state on Monday.
Under the GESS scheme, according to the Minister, peasant farmers would be reached via GSM by the accredited redemption centres and the two variety of the commodity (NPK and Urea) would be sold to the interesting farmers at N2,500 each as against the original price of N5000.
Tijjani disclosed that the scheme was aimed at fighting corruption in the distribution of fertilisers and to boost farming activities in the country .
He observed that with the commencement of raining season, the timing of the distribution by the state government was correct considering the fact that Sokoto state was a major agrarian in the country.
According to him, 65 redemption centres were established in the state where farmers could present their alerts on GSM or identification for paper voucher to pay for the commodity.
Speaking during the launch of the distribution of the state government owned 6,500 tones of the assorted commodity, Governor Aliyu Magatakarda Wamakko advised federal government to pursue the scheme with utmost care due to the nature of the people at the grass root.
“We must do all we can to support actual farmers to enhance food security. The policy is lovely and well articulated. It has showed the concern and commitment of the federal government towards revamping agriculture but for the nature of our people at the grass root it should be pursuit with care,” the Governor said.
Wamakko further advised that the people should be made to understand and appreciate the use of GSM facilities for the purposes of fertiliser purpose.
The state government declared that NPK would be sold at N1,700 while Urea would cost N1,800, meaning that farmers would enjoy 75 percent discount for each of the commodity.
New food security and nutrition project for Egypt
A new $3 million project that aims to improve food security and nutrition of women and young people in Egypt was announced today by FAO. The project is being financed by the government of Italy.
Unemployment rates for young people and women in Egypt are estimated at around 25percent, much higher than the national average of 10 percent.