Farmers Working in Farmland in Northern Nigeria

Food Security: Jigawa, Kano farmers receive 228 hectares for Gari project

*The Federal Government discloses the farmers’ associations and the River Basin Development Authority are being trained on effective irrigation systems and modern agricultural best practices to support food security and employment creation in Nigeria

Alexander Davis | ConsumerConnect

As part of efforts at supporting food security and employment creation, the Federal Government has handed over the 228 hectares Gari Irrigation Project to farmers in Jigawa and Kano states,in Northern Nigeria.

ConsumerConnect reports the five Local Government Areas (LGAs) of Kazaure and Roni in Jigawa State, and Kunchi, Danbatta and Makoda LGAs in Kano State, under the Hadejia Jama’are River Basin Development Authority are beneficiaries.

Gari, a popular staple foodstuff, in the Nigerian market

Mrs. Oyeronke Oluniyi, Director, Irrigation and Drainage, Federal Ministry of Water Resources, on behalf of Suleiman Adamu, Honourable Minister, in statement issued Thursday, November 3, 2022, in  Abuja, FCT, said the handing over was done as part of efforts at supporting Government’s food security and employment creation target.

Oluniyi stated that the irrigation projects, delivered to the farmers in parts was in its sixth phase, following government’s decision to complete all projects sectorally for maximum benefits.

The Director also said the Federal Ministry of Water Resources, through her mandate in irrigated agriculture, had aligned with the present Administration’s vision to diversify the country’s economy and lift several people out of poverty before 2030.

According to her, the Ministry has engaged the services of an Interface Consultant to establish and strengthen Water Users Association (WUAs), for effective operation and maintenance of the irrigation system.

She further noted that farmers’ associations and the River Basin Development Authority are being trained on effective irrigation systems, and modern agricultural best practices.

Mrs. Oluniyi further stated: “The concept of the interface consultancy is to promote Participatory Irrigation Management (PIM) by empowering the farmer’s community around the project.

“It is also for the farmers to assume responsibility for ownership of the irrigation and drainage systems around their farm plots, including financial and administrative accountability among others.’’

She commended the contribution of the Hadejia Jama’are River Basin Development Authority towards the performance of the management transfer process from Government-controlled to farmer-managed.

The Director, however, urged the RBDAs to ensure that farmers and their associations took their new responsibilities with steady grip, by ensuring that canals, drains, roads, culverts work effectively.

Highpoint of the event was the handing over and the signing of relevant documents for the project transfer.

In a related development, Oluniyi also sensitised women farmers on maintaining acceptable water quality and hygiene for irrigated agriculture, and to adopt appropriate and safe practices while discharging waste water.

She stated that women and the youths were hugely involved directly or indirectly in the use of water in homes for domestic purposes such as cooking, bathing and washing.

“Women and Youths also get engaged in irrigated agriculture either for commercial or subsistence purposes.

“It is now an established fact, that a well-structured Water User Association promotes a sustainable and better managed irrigated agriculture.

“The quality of water used for irrigation is essential for the yield and quantity of crops, maintenance of soil productivity, and protection of the environment.

“Also, of great relevance is to human health as regards consumption of some food items eaten directly or mildly cooked.’’

Oluniyi urged women and the youth to lead in promoting the attainment of good quality water in canals and reservoirs for safe crop production through irrigation in the country.

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