The Federal government has assured on the speedy intervention of over 450,000 hectares of rice farmlands and other crops destroyed by flood in Kebbi State.
The minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Sabo Nanono, said while visiting the scenes of the floods in Argungu on Saturday, September 12, that the FG will ensure that the farmers get improved seeds to restart planting as soon as the rains recede.
Nanono who was in company of the Governor of Kebbi State , Sen. Abubakar Atiku Bagudu, said it was one of the worst disasters witnessed in recent times and said his visit was to restore hope and build up confidence for the farmers in the state.
In a statement signed by the Ministry’s Deputy Director of Information, Eno Olotu, Nanono said, “What I have seen here today is very devastating, my coming here is at the instance of President Muhammadu Buhari who has sent me to commiserate with the people of Kebbi state over the flood and to give you hope and assurance that the government is concerned about your plight and will do something.”
He appealed to the farmers not to despair adding that the FG will address the situation.
He acknowledged that Kebbi State is one of the major producers of Rice in the country as well as other crops such as maize, groundnuts, wheat, sweet potatoes, sorghum and millet, stating that a loss to Kebbi will affect other states of the federation.
Nanono said the ministry will immediately set up a special committee to mitigate the situation and ensure that the dry season farming will be boosted. He said the ministry will also encourage the farmers to explore the innovative early harvesting of their produce as is done with other crops and promised to assist them with improved seeds.
In his remarks, Gov Bagudu lamented the massive loss to the farmers, explaining that it is not only the rice farms that are affected but also animal crops and fishing grounds as well as human lives were affected.
He said the latest flooding in the state is the worst after the 2012 experience and has affected over 450, 000 hectares of land stretching over 270km of farmlands.
Daily Times reports that hundreds of villages are said to be affected and many homelands washed away by the floods.
The minister also paid visits to the Sarki – Kebbi Argungu, Alhaji Samaila Mohammed Mera, the Emir of Gwandu who is also Chairman, Kebbi State Council of Chiefs, Alhaji Ilyasu Bashar and the Natsimi Gada of Argungu.