By Gabriel Ewepu
ABUJA- AS clamour for financial inclusion of rural people continues, a Nasarawa State monarch, Ibrahim Adamu, at the weekend commended a farmer cooperative, Nigeria Farmers Group and Cooperative Society, NFGCS, for boosting women and youth income in the area.
Adamu who is traditional ruler of Gaate community in Kokona Local Government Area of Nasarawa State, stated this during the second annual general meeting, AGN, of NFGCS, where he expressed joy for the initiative and commitment displayed by NFGCS to ensure a robust rural economy and reduction in rural-urban migration that has negatively affected the agricultural sector.
According to him the over 300 women and youth in the community has been engaged through the agriculture revolution initiative brought by NFGCS to them, therefore, has raised the standard of living of his people as they now earn up to N10, 000 in a week as against N1000 in a week.
He said: “I am most grateful and commend the agriculture revolution initiative brought by Nigeria Farmers Group and Cooperative Society, NFGCS, to my people, which our women and youth are engaged and today their income level has received a boost.
“Parents can now send their children to school. They can now feed their family with ease. We no longer hear of incidents of kidnapping and robbery because the people have all been engaged meaningfully.
“Before NFGCS came here, most of my people can’t even earn up to a N1, 000 in a week but now some can earn up N10, 000 in a week. You can see our roads are being managed by the cooperative and we are aware there are plans to connect light to this community, so we will continue to offer any support you people want from us.”
Meanwhile, following the impact by NFGCS the monarch further said, “My people seeking greener pasture in cities like Abuja should have a rethink and come back home to take advantage of the opportunity NFGCS has brought to them. As I speak some of our youths who migrated to the cities are gradually returning home, and most of them are back to agriculture.
“They have realized that they can be comfortable and become self reliant as they engage in agriculture than to risk their lives in the name of seeking greener pasture in the city, and not satisfied with what they have been paid.”
The National Coordinator, NFGCS, Retson Tedheke, said it is amazing seeing genuine commitment and determination by members of Gaate community to come out of poverty as he recalled initial visits to the community, which the people were doubtful about their intention and plans to add value to their lives, but today they are no more the same, because they embraced the initiative.
Tedheke added that with the over 300 women and young people already engaged by NFGCS, there are over 1000 people from the community have also been enrolled into the their platform alongside 10,000 active participants under the initiative.
“Though there have been challenges, things are getting better by the day and it has been a very interesting adventure so far”, he said
Also speaking was Olajide Abiola of the Credit and Risk department of NFGCS, described the people of , Gaate as “Very committed and industrious people”, and promised them as they have been to NFGCS since it commenced operation
According to him Gaate will not only become a city in the next one year but also a centre of government interest that would attract more investors and open the rural economy.