Emmanuel Allahnana, the programme manager, Nasarawa Agriculture Development Authority (NADP), has disclosed the intention of the Japanese government to build agriculture processing and equipment centres, worth $700,000 in Lafia, the state capital.
Allahnana, who disclosed this in an interview with newsmen in Lafia, said the processing and equipment centres will be built in Assakio and Shabu, all in Lafia local government area of the state.
He said a letter to this effect had been forwarded to Governor Abdullahi Sule, through the state commissioner of agriculture, where the state government will pay only 10 percent of the amount as a counterpart fund.
“There are some investors who are coming into the state; Sasakawa, have also shown interest to invest in the state and others are willing to do the same.
“The Japan government is going to invest over 700 thousand dollars in Nasarawa State, by building processing and agricultural equipment centres in Assakio and Shabu, the state government is going to pay only 10 percent of that amount.
“The letter is on the way to the governor, through the commissioner of agriculture and the two communities are ready to give their lands for the projects.
“When the country director came, we met with the deputy governor and the state is willing. These are some of the little areas we can help and bring investors into the state” he said.
The programme manager also disclosed that WOFAN Icon II, is also working in four local government areas in the southern part of the state namely Doma, Awe, Obi and Keana and they are supposed to work in 10 communities each, but for now, they will start in 3 communities in each local government.
“As I am talking to you, we have chosen four locations and the communities will provide 100 by 100 hectares of land or, 100 by 50, depending on what they have, then building of these agric centres will commence soon,” he said.
During this year’s farming season, the NADP programme manager said, as the ‘farmers hope’, they are going to distribute seedlings ranging from oil palms, cashew, rice and yellow and white maize, are all ready to be distributed to farmers at subsidised rates.
“For fertiliser, I cannot give you the exact figures because the memo through the commissioner of agriculture, is before the governor, we are awaiting the approval, but I want to believe that it will not be more than 1,200 metric tonnes of fertilisers.
“For rice and maize, we are targeting nine and five tonnes respectively for framers this year. By so doing, we are ready not minding the climate change, because last year we lost maize and rice fields to flooding he said.