Zamfara Government has proposed the sum of N8 billion for the transformation of its agricultural sector to an all-year-round activity.
This was disclosed by Gov. Bello Matawalle on Tuesday while presenting the 2020 budget proposal tagged “Budget of Peace and Renewal of Hope” to the state House of Assembly.
Matawalle said the amount would be utilised through the redesigned Zamfara State Comprehensive Agricultural Revolution Programme (ZACAREP).
He said under the scheme, N2 billion would be used to procure fertilizer while another N1 billion was for the production of 18,000 metric tons of the commodity by the state fertilizer blending plant.
The governor said that plans had been concluded to overhaul the fertilizer blending plant at a cost of N3.8 billion.
He explained that N500 million would be used in the rehabilitation of existing irrigation facilities, N1 billion for job creation at the ZACAREP phase two project, and N500 million for the purchase of essential commodities.
According to Matawalle, all these were geared toward expanding avenues for job creation for unemployed youth of the state.
“As we know, until the past few months after the advent of this administration, our state was ravaged by a great crisis which had a telling effect on all sectors of our economy.
“The state became highly prominent on the international scene for banditry, cattle rustling, kidnapping, and arson.
“The situation was further compounded by a backlog of liabilities arising from contracts, pensions and gratuity and other workers entitlements,” he noted.
The governor who presented a budget proposal of N182.7 billion (N182,752, 973,858) noted that “the budget is prepared taking into account the fact that we cannot adequately address these multiple problems and place the state’s economy on the path of sustainable growth, without correcting the apparent distortions such as free-market economy with the state as the key driver and heavily relying on accruals from the federation account”.
Matawalle who commended the support and cooperation existing between all the arms of government in the state reassured that the leadership would continue to meet the aspirations of the citizens.
The Speaker of the House of Assembly, Alhaji Nasiru Magarya, while receiving the budget estimate from the governor, promised to work on it immediately so that the government could proceed on its sworn responsibilities.