Rice farmers in Nasarawa and Kwara States are set to benefit from a $289,095 grant from the government of Japan, following the signing of two grant agreements to that effect. The grant agreements signed between the Embassy of Japan and the Nasarawa Agricultural Development Programme (NADP) and Tabitha Cumi Foundation is expected to increase rice production in Nasarawa and Kwara States. While the Japanese ambassador, Yutaka Kikuta signed on behalf of the Embassy, Commissioner for Agriculture, Nasarawa State, Professor Otaki Alanana signed for the NADP and Tayo Erinle, for Tabitha Cumi Foundation. The agreement which is under the Japanese Grant Assistance for Grassroots Human Security Projects (GGP) is to provide rice farming equipment for farmers in Doma Local Government Area of Nasarawa State and Edu Local Government Area in Kwara State.
Speaking shortly after the signing of the agreements, Ambassador Kikuta expressed hope that the public-private partnership assistance being entered, “will contribute to increasing rice production in Nasarawa and Kwara States. While disclosing that Japan has a visible presence in Nigeria’s agricultural sector, the envoy added that the signing of the two agreements would further strengthen the amicable relation between Japan and Nigeria. According to the ambassador, Japan over the last 20 years has supported Nigeria’s development through the GGP to the tune of $12 million.