FEC approves N1.4bn for youth farmers

The Federal Executive Council, FEC, has approved the sum of N1.4 billion for the procurement of equipment and agricultural inputs for the National Youth Farmers’ Scheme.

Lai Mohammed, Minister of Information and Culture, disclosed this while briefing State House correspondents after the FEC meeting presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo on Wednesday at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

He said that four contracts were awarded for the scheme and expressed optimism that the projects would encourage youths to go into agriculture.

According to him, the first is provision of farmer inputs such as seeds, cottons, planting materials, agro-chemicals, fertilizer, and growth enhancers, for 3000 hectares in Abia, Adamawa, Borno, Ekiti, Gombe, Imo, Jigawa, Katsina, Kebbi, Niger, Osun, Yobe and Enugu States.

He said that the second was the supply of tractors, ploughs, ridgers, disc arrows, hydraulic tipping trailers, logistics and deliveries to selected states such as Kaduna, Katsina, Kebbi, Osun and Jigawa states.

He said that rice pyramids recently inaugurated by the president and the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme relied heavily on small farm holders rather than big companies as the programme had benefitted no fewer than three million small farmer holders.

He said that the nation’s food security depended on stepping up local food production.

On his part, Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, said FEC approved contract for clearing of equipment for the deep blue project which would facilitate sitting of some of the projects in the coastal towns for the sum of N2.8 billion.

“Another one that was approved is the licensing of Oracle E Business Suite in the sum of N955.5 million. That’s for NPA.

The minister said that another approval was for N214 million as variation for the initial contract of N3.5 billion for the purchase of one railway crane of 450 tons capacity for emergency recovery on standard gauge.

“Finally, contract for the reconstruction of the narrow gauge track from Minna to Barrow,’’ he said.

More so, FCT Minister, Mohammed Bello, said that the council approved award of contract for the full scope development of FCT Highway number 105, popularly known as the Kuje road.

According to him, that is the road that links Kuje satellite town with the interchange and has been approved at the sum of N54.9 billion with a completion period of four years.

“The second one is the road leading to one of the rail stations along the Abuja city rail system—and that is the station at Gbazango. Gbazango is a community within Bwari, FCT.

“The intention of the project is to complete that road so that the station will be functional.

“It was awarded at the contract sum of N1.3 billion,’’ he said.

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