David-Chyddy Eleke in Awka

Anambra State Government has said it will set up a seed multiplication centre in the state as part of efforts towards making the state certified seed producer.

The Commissioner for Agriculture, Mechanisation, Processing and Export, Mr. Afam Mbanefo announced this in his office in Awka while welcoming the fifth Federal Government/IFAD Supervision Mission to the State.

Members of the delegation, who were in the state on a two day inspection tour, were drawn from IFAD, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development as well as Federal Ministry of Finance.

Addressing the delegation, Mbanefo, who described Value Chain Development Programme VCDP IFAD assisted as a well packaged programme, announced that its activities especially in rice and cassava value chain contributed immensely to the States’ position in the country in rice production capacity.

Mbanefo applauded the team for the series of trainings it organised for farmers on the best agronomic practices in rice and cassava farming, which according to him was evident in the achievement of seven point four tons per hectare as against one point one to two tons they were recording before VCDP intervention.

The leader of the team, Dr. Oyesola Oyebanji said they were in the state to assess the progress of the programme implementation aimed at identifying the policies that are working well, while those that did not work well, will be captured and improved on for better results.

Oyebanji who said the team embark on the supervision mission twice in a year, while describing it as very critical. He announced that their mid-term review mission will take place in November when the six years programme will complete its first three years.

On his part, the State Programme Coordinator, Value Chain Development Programme IFAD assisted, Mr. Nnamdi Agwuncha, while appealing for more technical assistance, said the supervision mission will strengthen them towards more implementation progress and capacity building.

Highpoints of the courtesy visit were presentation of some IFAD journals to the Commissioner by the team leader and visit to the ministries’ ICT control room housing the co-ordinates and update of all the state farmers.