The Ondo State Government says it has earmarked N2.2 billion in the 2017 budget for the development of the agricultural sector.
Gov. Rotimi Akeredolu said this on Thursday in Akure at the inauguration of Ondo State Farmers Cooperative Multipurpose Union Ltd., which was formed by Farmers Business School (FBS) in the state.
The governor, who was represented by his deputy, Mr Agboola Ajayi, said that out of the amount allocated to the agricultural sector, N25 million was set aside for the expansion of the FBS programme in the state.
He said that the coming together of farmers to form a group was a product of the intervention by a development partner, the German International Cooperation (GIZ).
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that GIZ is an agency of the Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development of Germany
“I have been reliably informed that as a follow-up to the impacts of the FBS trainings on beneficiaries, the various groups decided to come together and register as Ondo State Farmers’ Cooperative Multipurpose Union.
“You will recall that on my assumption of duty on 24th of February, 2017, I outlined a five-point agenda of my administration to fast-track an all-round development of Ondo State, in which agriculture takes a special position.
“About two months ago, my administration entered into partnership with WeWood Company Nigeria Ltd. to regenerate 1,000 of land at the afforestation project site along Ore,’’ he said.
Akeredolu said that he had directed the Ministry of Agriculture to take inventory of farmers in the state, so as to know the actual number of farmers in the state.
He, however, advised the members of the union to put into practice the skills they had acquired in the training programme.
Also speaking, Mr Alex Aragbaye, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture, lauded GIZ for the training and re-training of agricultural extension officers and the huge amount it spent on the training of farmers.
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the governor, at the event, also inaugurated the secretariat of the farmers’ cooperative union, which is equipped with modern information and communication facilities.