The state Commissioner for Agriculture and Forestry, Olayato Aribo, has disclosed that the Federal Government will spend more than N200 million on the distribution of inputs to farmers in the state and N200 million on the distribution of assets through the Fadama III Project.

This, he said, was in line with the government’s commitment to improving the farmers’ productivity by giving them free implements to work with through the Nigeria COVID-19 Action Recovery and Economic Stimulus Programme.

Aribo disclosed this at the distribution of barbecue equipment to 50 jobless persons in the state who have been trained in the art of barbecue production.

Aribo said, “This year alone, Fadama III Project is going to spend more than N200 million on the distribution of inputs to farmers and N200 million on the distribution of assets and 24 rural access roads have been earmarked for rehabilitation across the state.

“This is a point of contact to many meaningful interventions the NG-CARES programme has made through the Fadama III Project in the state.”

According to him, the objective of the NG-CARES programme was to alleviate poverty through the promotion of food security.

He added that “the only way we can achieve this is to ensure that the poor farmers benefit from the programme and not that we the implementers should benefit personally.”

Aribo urged the beneficiaries of the free implements to ensure that they use the equipment to turn around their fortunes by making good and productive use of the items.

In his remarks, the state Fadama III Project Coordinator, Olusiji Olatunji, stated that about 5,000 farmers would be reached before the year runs out. He explained that the programme has three disbursement link indicators which involved inputs/services, improved agricultural infrastructures and agricultural production assets.

“For some weeks now we have been distributing both inputs and production assets to our farmers, today, we have specifically invited Mr. Commissioner here to be part of the giant stride the project is making in the Result Area 2 of the NG-CARES.

He explained further that the beneficiary youths were targeted due to the level of their vulnerability and the potential risk they may pose to society if left unattended.

“We have trained them in the business of making barbecue with fish. They are all experts, in fact after the training they are all eager to start the business,” Olatunji stated.