The Jigawa Government will support 1,000 farmers to cultivate 1,000 hectares of rice farms across the state in 2018, an official said on Thursday.
Alhaji Jamilu Dan-Malam, a Special Assistant to Gov. Muhammad Badaru, told the newsmen in Dutse that the farmers were drawn from the 23 rice producing local government areas in the state.
He said, ‘‘Preparations for rice production in the 2018 cropping season is ongoing.
‘‘As you know, His Excellency has given much attention to agriculture with a view to improving the economic wellbeing of the downtrodden.
‘‘And last week we held a meeting with him where he approved that 1,000 hectares of rice be cultivated during the 2018 wet farming season.
‘‘So, 1,000 farmers will be engaged where each farmer will be supported to cultivate one hectare.
‘‘The beneficiaries are currently being screened to participate in the exercise in 23 rice producing local government areas of the state.’’
Dan-Malam stated that preparations for the programme had reached 60 per cent, adding that the screening for the beneficiaries had commenced.
According to him, one tube well would be sunk for each hectare to ensure adequate water supply for the programme.
Dan-Malam further told the newsmen that improved and certified seeds, fertiliser, water pumps, insecticides, pesticides and sprayers were among the inputs to be given to the farmers.
‘‘Hadejia senatorial district will have 40 per cent of the total hectares because they have the largest Fadama land in the state, while the remaining 60 per cent would be shared between the other two senatorial districts.’’
He pointed out that the beneficiaries would pay back the soft loan after cultivation.
‘‘After cultivation, the farmers will pay for the total cost of the inputs provided to them for the exercise.
‘‘They will just pay the exact amount; no interest is attached to it.
‘‘And after the exercise, the off-takers will come and buy from the youths, then we will take our money for the provided farm inputs and they will get their share too.
‘‘The farmers have nothing to worry about, as you know already, we have our local off-takers like Danmod rice mills in Kafin Hausa, Three Brothers in Hadejia, Majestic in Birnin Kudu and Closjas rice millers, among others,’’ he said.