As part of efforts to boost cotton development and remedy the shortage of land for farming occasioned by insecurity in Zamfara State the state government has dedicated 130,000 hectares of land for cotton farming in seventeen emirates in the state.
The state’s Special Adviser on Zamfara Directorate of Accelerated Cotton Development (ZAMDACOD) and Chairman of the State Project Management Team Alhaji Abdulahi Maiturare, disclosed this in a statement he issued yesterday.
He stated that the state government had secured the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) approval to finance 60,000 farmers through their commodity associations.
He said: “it would be recalled that during his campaigns the state governor, Dr. Bello Mattawallen had promised to revive the agricultural sector with emphasis on cotton production.
“This necessitated the reorganization of the Directorate of Accelerated Cotton Development known as ZAMDACOD and assigned with the responsibility to pilot the activities of the directorate.
“On assumption of duty as the special adviser to the governor in charge of the directorate we had a wide range of consultations with the government, partners and the private sector on how to actualise the governor’s plan.”
He explained that under the scheme, 30,000 farmers would be drawn from cotton farmers while another 30,000 would be selected from rice farmers.
“Cotton farmers are to be treated under the National Cotton association of Nigeria (NACATON) while the rice farmers are to be handled by the Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria (RIFAN)”, he added.
He said the state government’s decision to dedicate 130,000 hectares to farming would remedy the problem of shortage of land for farming occasioned by insecurity and allied factors.
He also disclosed that the state government in collaboration with the Raw Material Research and Development Council had secured 4.5 tons of cotton seed suitable for farmlands in the state.
Maiturare commended the state governor for reviving cotton production and praised his commitment to influence the revival of the ailing textiles industries and other indigenous cotton ginneries in the state.
He urged farmers to reciprocate the gesture by supporting government policies and programmes.