NIGERIA. Minna, Niger State. The Niger State government’s Council on Agriculture has launched the state Agriculture Policy and Investment Plan for sustainable economic development. The plan is intended to get more investors in the area with protective measures in place to support their actions.
Governor explains importance of Agriculture Policy. During the launch of the policy document, Niger State Governor, Alhaji Abubakar Sani Bello, said that the initiatives in the Agriculture Policy document are apt and timely.
He said that as no development in any sector can be achieved without a strong foundation, “These documents are intended to serve as veritable tools that will continue to guide and protect the investors and relevant actors in the sector, as well as charting the course for the sustainable economic growth of the state.
“The Niger State Executive Council has granted approval for the two documents to guide the development of agriculture in the state. This is by no means a great achievement, as the state has joined the league of other few states in the country with an agriculture policy in place.”
The Governor commends the Alliance for Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) for their determination to support initiatives to address food insecurity, especially in the era of the COVID-19 pandemic.
AGRA assists government’s plan. AGRA said that they are helping the agricultural sector in Niger State to function properly, attract investors, improve extension services, and chart a course for sustainable economic growth and development.
The Associate Programme Officer in the state, Mr Godswill Aguiyi, disclosed that the project has invested $2 million in the agricultural sector of Niger State.
“When the project began in the state, it discovered that the Agriculture Policy document has been just a draft and we had to help the state government in developing it so that when investors come, they could have a plan that would guide and protect their interest.
“The organization also partnered with the government to hold this meeting which is the Niger state Council on Agriculture meeting which, we learnt, was held 24 years ago. The meeting which has brought stakeholders in the agricultural sector will help in formulating a plan to implement the policy document and proffer solutions to the challenges faced by agriculture in the state.”
Professor stresses the significance of Agriculture plan. Muhammed Kuta Yahaya, a professor of Agricultural Extension and Development at the University of Ibadan, said that the development of the Agricultural Policy is an important milestone for Niger State.
Yahaya emphasized the need for the policy document and investment plan to be implemented and not cast aside like other policy documents in the past.