By Ndahi Marama, Maiduguri

International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has distributed improved varieties of agricultural seeds to 24,000 vulnerable farmers and heads of households, mostly victims of armed conflict, to enable them cultivate their farmlands  2022 cropping season.

The organization had also donated N55,000 cash to each Head of Household to protect their seeds, with additional N20,000 to enable them buy agro-inputs, agro- chemicals and other needs such as land labour and clearing.

This was disclosed in an interview with Journalists by the Head of Agronomist, Economic and Security Department, ICRC in Maiduguri, Mohammed Hussaini, after flagging off the exercise at Oil Mills Company.

He said, the beneficiaries were drawn mostly from Maiduguri Metropolitan Council, MMC, Jere, Dikwa, Bama and Monguno Local Government Areas which have suffered devastating effects of Boko Haram in past decade.

Hussaini said, “8,000 farmers from MMC and Jere have benefitted, While in Dikwa Local Government Area, a total of 5,000 households are to benefit from the gesture to ensure food security.

“In Dikwa, we have a total of 5,000 households, in Ngala, there are 2,000 households, in Bama we have 3,500 households, while in Monguno there are 5,000 households who were carefully selected to benefit from the exercise. 

“These improved seed varieties are 10kg bag of maize, 1.5kg of millet, 10kg rice seed, 7kg groundnuts, 6kg okra and 4kg cowpea for each Head of household.

“Likewise, each of these households are to receive N55,000 for seed protection, with additional N20,000 to enable them buy agro-inputs, agro- chemicals and other needs such as land labour and clearing.

“These gestures which is part of ICRC’s core mandate to support vulnerable farmers affected by the armed conflict, is also aimed at improving the means of their livelihood, food security and to make them self-reliant as they resettle back to their liberated communities.” He stated. 

Mallam Adam Isa from Jere and Mohammed Abubakar from MMC who spoke on behalf of the beneficiaries, appreciated ICRC for the gesture, which they said, will amply assist them as they pick up the pieces of their lives in their liberated communities.

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