Hammed Shittu in Ilorin
Kwara State branch chairman of Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria (RIFAN), Dr. Ahmed Saba has said that, the state has joined elite states in rice production in the country, with its over 102,000 metric tons output during wet and dry season in 2021.
The North Central state, which contributed over 40,000 metric tons of rice paddy to the recently unveiled rice pyramid in Abuja, was not considered a rice producing state before the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari and the state Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq.
Speaking with journalists in Ilorin over the weekend on the state of the nation, Saba explained that, “we thought we didn’t do enough in our production, until we got to Abuja, where the Central Bank of Nigeria(CBN), who is in charge of the anchor borrowers program unveiled the data, showing that Kwara State actually did better than we thought,by being among the top rice producing states in the country. Kwara State produced 62,332 metric tons of rice paddy during the dry season and 40,000 metric tons during the wet season, making a total of 102,332 metric tons.”
Saba added, “The success of Kwara State in rice production should go to the President of RIFAN, Alhaji Aminu Goronyo, who gave Kwara State chapter of RIFAN all the necessary support to achieve this feat. Alhaji Aminu Goronyo didn’t only give us all the support we needed, he also provided valuable guidance at critical times, which helped us to navigate all difficult circumstances”
Saba also thanked the CBN and the State government for providing enabling environment and support for the program.
He added, “We must give kudos to the federal government of Nigeria, particularly the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for initiating a policy that enable farmers to access resources like never before, across all the value chain, from cultivation to harvest and sale, particularly the ilorin team, who supported RIFAN immensely during some emergency moments.”