Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Anambra monarch empowers Ihiala LG farmers with hybrid agric seedlings

Regent Oluoha of Ihiala signing a document

By Okechukwu Onuegbu

Respites recently come for the people of Ihiala Local Government Area, Anambra State as International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Ibadan empowered farmers with multimillion naira improved cassava stems, maize, palm fruits, and other hybrid seedlings.

IITA which also distributed improved beans and akidi, plantains, peas and soya-beans, educated on farmers on mechanised agriculture such as productions, harvesting, processing, branding, marketing, uses, consumption and others.

Among beneficiaries of the event held at Ihiala Council Secretariat were poor farmers cut across the nooks and crannies of the local government area, including some stakeholders like community leaders, politicians, traditional rulers and cabinet chiefs poised to help monitor its effective distributions and uses.

Addressing the gatherings, sponsor of the programme and IITA Head of Cassava Transformation, Regent Oluoha of Ihiala ancient kingdom, Dr Richardson Okechukwu revealed that it took the organisation 13 years to research and develops the agricultural varieties.

According to Regent Okechukwu , the programme was geared towards creating employments for youths through agriculture and its by-products, empower and sensitise the poor rural farmers to become self sufficient and employer of labour, as well as to encourage mechanised farmers to be more productive, expertise and exporters.

The monarch while assuring that he had created mechanism for sustainability of the programme throughout the communities and villages in Ihiala, noted that he was working with the local government authority to help the beneficiaries access machines and loans for productions and processing of cassava, which according to him, has other numerous benefits other than garri, akpu (fufu) and starch.

“With these hybrid seedlings and cassava stems, we are expecting increase in food production in Ihiala local government area to the tones of over 40, 000 per hectare. This will reduce rural to urban migration, create rooms for employments and also empower the employed to create jobs or absorb the job seekers. It is in line with Governor Willie Obiano’s agricultural blueprint” he added.

Also speaking, Dr Emma Okechukwu emphasised that the programme would help to eradicate hunger and poverty in Ihiala and Nigeria at large.

On his part, Hon. Chukwudozie Okeke, the Ihiala Local Government Supervisory Councillor for Agriculture, assured that his colleagues and 20 wards councilors were ready to monitor and help beneficiaries of the seedlings make inform use of them.

Earlier, the Transition Committee Chairman, Ihiala Local Government Area, Hon. Ifeanyichukwu Odemegwu, while commending the monarch for the empowerment, advised the beneficiaries to follow the teachings and effectively use the seedlings for the betterment of the society.



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