Nigeria’s Apex Bank, under its Anchor Borrowers Programme, says it is set to empower no fewer than 11,250 farmers for the 2020 wet season farming in Adamawa.
Alhaji Ilyasu Mu’azu, the Chairman, Adamawa branch of Maize Association of Nigeria (MAAN), disclosed this during the flag-off of the 2020 wet season Anchor Borrowers Programme on Thursday in Yola.
Mu’azu stated that the 2020 wet season Anchor Borrowers Programme in the state was in collaboration with Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), MAAN and the Unity Bank.
“In the 2020 Wet Season farming, 11,250 farmers will be empowered in Adamawa by the Central Bank of Nigeria Anchor Borrowers Programme in collaboration with Maize Association of Nigeria and Unity Bank.
“In Adamawa state, in 2018 and 2019, the Anchor Borrowers Programme empowered 4,293 small scale farmers, through the provision of inputs, extension services and linkage with market outlets,” Mu’azu said.
He said that the farmer’s empowerment was a soft loan which would be repaid with farm produce.
The chairman observed that the rate of population growth, climate change, insurgency, farmers/herders conflict, flood effect and COVID-19 pandemic was alarming and threatening national food production in 2020.
Alhaji Adamu Yusuf, the CBN representative, said that the apex bank was committed to ensuring effective national agricultural growths.
Yusuf called on the beneficiary farmers to utilise the inputs given to them judiciously, to improve their standard of living and national food production.
He noted that the inputs were given as soft loam to farmers, urging them to repay the loan as at when due, to enable the programme to capture, additional farmers, in the next farming season.
Speaking on behalf of the Adamawa Government, Mr Kabir Bello, commended the Federal Government for the gesture.
Bello said the loan was covered by the Nigeria Agricultural Insurance to reduce negative and natural risks on the farmers.
According to him, the programme will go a long way in improving food production, adding that the state government will ensure farmers make effective use of the inputs.
Responding on behalf of the beneficiaries, Malam Usman Michika, State Chairman, All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN), also lauded the federal government for initiating the Anchor Borrowers Programme.
Michika, however, urged the CBN to extend the programme to cover more farmers in the state.