Some beneficiaries of Kogi Value Chain Development Programme (VCDP) under the FGN/IFAD assisted project, have commended President Muhammadu Buhari and Gov. Yahaya Bello for empowering rural farmers on best agronomy practices to lift them out of poverty.
The farmers made the commendation when the President’s daughter, Hajia Fatima Buhari, visited the FGN/IFAD-VCDP Rice Processing Centre in ASCO Camp in Ajaokuta Local Government Area on Tuesday.
Hajia Fatima Buhari is the Marketing Enterprise Development Advisor (MEDA) of FGN/IFAD-VCDP, is on three-day Technical Implementation Support visit to VDCP projects in Kogi.
Hajia Rabi Abdullahi, the Women Leader of ASCO Camp Cluster farm, Ajaokuta, thanked the federal and state governments for lifting the rural farmers out of poverty and ensuring food security through the VCDP projects in the state.
She stressed that the rural farmers had been empowered on best agronomy practices which has enhanced their yield and productivity in cassava and rice value chain.
On her part, Rebecca Sule, the Youth Leader, said the VCDP had trained them on balanced diet and how to minimise cost in processing their food products for sales with high quality nutrients.
“I am a graduate but no job. It was like a joke when we were trained, but today all our variety products on cassava are in the market.
“We are grateful to President Buhari and Governor Bello for using the VCDP to help farmers at the grassroots,” Sule said.
Also speaking, Mrs Zuwaira Abubakar, a Gari Processor, said the VCDP had trained them on saving culture and how to make variety of products from gari as well as standard measurement and packaging.
“I am a widow with three children who were out of school because of lack of fund, but through the VCDP program my children are now back to school.
“We thank our President and our Governor for using this VCDP program to bring us out of poverty,” Abubakar said.
In her remarks, Hajia Fatima Buhari, thanked the governor for ensuring prompt payment of the state counterparts fund for the implementation of VCDP activities in the state, and appealed for its sustainability.
The President’s daughter commended the State Coordinator, IFAD-VCDP, Dr Stella Adejoh for her commitment to the success of the programme in Kogi State.
Fatima Buhari said the FGN/IFAD-VCDP projects had been successful across the 36 States of the federation including FCT, assuring the federal government’s commitment to achieving the goals and objectives of the programme.
The state’s Commissioner for Agriculture, Mr David Apeh, thanked the Kogi VCDP for the great feat, adding that the visit of Fatima Buhari, would motivate the farmers to put more efforts to the programme.
Apeh assured the commitment of the state government to the prompt payment of the counterparts fund for the VCDP program.
The State Coordinator, IFAD-VCDP, Dr Stella Adejoh, thanked Fatima Buhari for the choice of Kogi for the technical implementation support visit.
She noted that the VCDP had made great impacts in the lives of farmers in the state by improving their yield and productivity and lifting many out of poverty.
She explained that the VCDP was to ensure food security by teaching rural farmers the best agronomy practices, empower them to come out of poverty and enhance the state’s economy on sustainable basis.
Dr Adejoh appreciated the governor for his unprecedented support for the implementation of the programme, saying the great success would not have been possible without his backing.
Earlier in the day, the Kogi State Deputy Governor, Dr Edward Onoja, received the President’s daughter, Fatima Buhari, on behalf of the Governor at the Banquet hall, Government House, Lokoja, before proceeding to Ajaokuta.