cattle farmer

The All farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN) on Tuesday called for the inclusion of livestock and fish farmers in the Growth Enhancement Support (GES) scheme.

GES is the Federal Government?s fertiliser and seed subsidy programme developed in partnership with the private sector which is aimed at ensuring direct access to agricultural inputs by farmers.

Dr Tunde Arosayin, the National Financial Secretary of the association, made the call in an interview. Arosayin said that these categories of farmers needed input support because of their continuation to the development of the economy.

Under the initiative, the direct procurement and distribution of farm inputs by the Federal Government has been discontinued and replaced by an electronic distribution channel known as the “e-wallet.??

The conditions of the e-wallet scheme stipulate that a farmer, registered under the GES, is expected to pay 50 per cent of the cost of farm inputs, while the federal and state governments would pay the 50 per cent balance at 25 per cent each.

?The programme must be designed in such a way that either fingerlings or juveniles or feeds are given to them at 50 per cent subsidy because it is not everybody that is into crop farming.

?Like the fishermen in the high seas, they need hooks and bigger nets and also canoes; they are all integral in our economic development, they have their input.?

Arosanyin also urged the Federal Government to sensitise farmers on the programme and ensure it is done early enough so that more farmers can benefit.

He noted that the testimonies of farmers that benefitted in the first phase of the programme had aroused interest in others to participate.

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