ODSG flags off planting season
By Fatima Muraina
As Ondo state government has flagged off 2023 planting season, the State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, has affirmed his continued support for agriculture development and alleviating the challenges confronting farmers for better production and food sufficiency.
The Governor also used the occasion to warn illegal encroachers in the state forest reserves.
The ceremony featured distribution of agricultural inputs to farmers at Imafon Comprehensive High School, Imafon.
The Governor who was represented at the occasion by the acting Governor, Lucky Aiyedatiwa promised not to relent in releasing grants to farmers’ organisations.
The Governor added that establishment of the Amotekun Corps has reduced threat to farming activities lives and property in the state as farmers are more secured.
Governor Akeredolu also used the opportunity to sound a note of warning to encroachers and land grabbers to desist from carrying out illegal activities on government land and forest reserves, saying government would not fold its arms and watch people plunder forest reserves and convert our commonwealth to personal use and gains.
The Commissioner for Agriculture and Forestry, Mr Olayato Aribo said the annual event affords government through the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry to educate farmers and expose them to the various opportunities available to them on improved varieties of crops, livestock, planting materials and good agricultural practices.
He added that flag-off ceremony is an avenue for government to demonstrate its commitment to the development of the agricultural sector which he described as lucrative and capable of eradicating poverty in the society.
The Commissioner reiterated that the administration of Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, would not leave any stone unturned to ensure that farmers as well as their investments are well protected.
Aribo said government interventions in agric include; disbursement of N47,000,000.00 agriculture loans to all categories of farmers in the state, including agro-processors, the state government with the support of IFAD LIFE-ND project distributed farm inputs as palliatives to 50 flood victim farmers, 920 youths and vulnerable women and 124 incubators benefited from the project in year 2022 under the incubate-ship and incubator-ship another 1000 beneficiaries would benefit in 2023 as incubatees and 100 as incubators under LIFE-ND project.
He further said that the state under the Ondo CARES programme distributed agricultural inputs worth N317,980,200 and 18 solar powered water pump to farmers among others.