More than 2,000 Akwa Ibom farmers have been supplied with yam seedlings for cultivation during this year’s farming season in the state.
The commissioner for agriculture, Dr Glory Edet, while distributing the yam seedlings in Uyo, Akwa Ibom capital, on behalf of the Federal Government, urged the beneficiaries to ensure the cultivation of the seedlings in their respective farms for the multiplier effect to be felt in the state.
Edet advised farmers against the consumption of the yam seedlings, advising them to take advantage of the fertile soil the state is blessed with to grow the tuber crop for the objectives to be achieved.
The commissioner appreciated the officials of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD) for working in collaboration with her Ministry for the fulfilment of last year’s promise of providing farmers with yam seedlings for cultivation.
Her words: “We promised you people last year that yam seedlings will be made available to you for cultivation in the state and today that promise has been fulfilled. We are not asking you to go and cook the yam seedlings and eat with your family members. They are for cultivation to have a multiplier effect in the state.”
Edet also appreciated Governor Udom Emmanuel for ensuring that agriculture gets priority attention in his completion agenda through the provision of interest-free loans and distribution of farm inputs to farmers for the purpose of ensuring food sufficiency in the state.
She explained that not much could have been attracted from the Federal Government to the state in the area of agriculture but for Governor Emmanuel administration’s top priority tothe sector and solicited the cooperation of farmers to ensure the successful implementation of his completion agenda.
The commissioner presented bags of yam seedlings to the farmers, including Grace Jeremiah Ekpenyong, Grace Samuel Ekpenyong, Ofonime Akpan Henry, among others and wished them well in the task of producing food for the benefit of the teeming Akwa Ibom public.
The permanent secretary in the Ministry, Mrs Mary Ukoette Bassey, while welcoming farmers and stakeholders, appreciated officials of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD) for cooperating with her Ministry for the distribution of the yam seedlings to farmers in the state.
Bassey pledged the resolve of her Ministry to continue to encourage farmers to cultivate crops and reap bountiful harvests through the provision of basic farm inputs and technical advice on crop production.
She thanked the commissioner for agriculture, Dr Glory Edet,for the harmonious working relationship with the state governor to create positive impact in the agricultural sector for the realization of food sufficiency in the state.
The project supervisor of NEMA, Mr Egwu Demian, said the distribution of yam seedlings was in fulfillment of the promise they made during the presentation of farm inputs to farmers who were negatively impacted during the 2020 flood disaster in the state.
Demian noted that the distribution of the yam seedlings was aimed at encouraging Akwa Ibom farmers to put in their best in their Agricultural production for the realization of food sufficiency in the country.
His words: “The event of today is in fulfillment of the promise we made with you in October last year when farm inputs were made available to you. We are encouraging you all to cultivate the yam seedlings in your respective farms for more yields to be recorded in the state.”
He was optimistic that every farmer that was enumerated during the 2020 flood disaster would be attended to with the provision of the yam seedlings for cultivation.
Madam Roseline Jack Akpan of Ikpe Udok community in Essien Udom Local Government Area, in an exclusive interview with Midweek Pioneer Agric, promised to make judicious application of the yam seedlings in her farm in order to reap maximum benefits from the government gesture.
Akpan, while thanking the government for the gesture done yam farmers in the state, promised to apply poultry dropping to her seedlings for high yields to be realized.