The Federal government on Friday announced that it had approved a N13 billion intervention Fund to control quelea birds, locusts, grasshoppers and other pests in 12 States in the North.
This became known in a statement signed by the information Director of the Federal Ministry of agriculture and rural development, Theodore Ogaziechi, which explains that the intervention Fund is designed to ensure uninterrupted agricultural activity during the 2020 agricultural season, control cross-border pests and minimize the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as guarantee both food and national food security.
The 12 frontline States include Sokoto, Kebbi, Zamfara, Katsina, Kano, Jigawa, Bauchi, Gombe, Adamawa, Taraba, Yobe and Borno.
Noting the end of the control of the cross-border (migratory) pest of the 2020 dry season at Birnin Kebbi International airport, Kebbi state, the Minister of agriculture and rural development, Muhammad Nanono, explained why the government decided to release the funds indicated in connection with the outbreak of desert locusts in East Africa and the middle East, where West Africa, where Nigeria is geographically located, may have a fair share of locust swarm., to be prepared to resist any intrusion of a terrible pest, and to control all cross-border pests to protect the national food system and production.
Nanono said: “The current administration under the leadership of President muhammadu Buhari is very determined to fight any threat that can negate the huge success recorded so far, especially in the agricultural sector.
“The choice of Kebbi state to remove the flag is deliberate, given the extensive agricultural activities in the state and the huge cooperation and collaboration of the state government in carrying out agricultural interventions over the years.
He also thanked Kebbi state Governor Abubakar Baguda for the efforts made to control migrating pests in the state and help farmers achieve their dreams.
He also expressed appreciation to the frontline state governors for their cooperation and collaboration with the Ministry in reducing the impact of migrating pests in their States and protecting farmers ‘ investments.
Meanwhile, Bagudu praised the President’s vision and efforts for various agricultural strategies and projects aimed at improving food production and security, creating jobs and diversifying the economy.