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Emir begs bandits to allow peace in the farms | The Nation

Emir begs bandits to allow peace in the farms | The Nation

By Justina Asishana, Minna

Bothered about the attacks on farmers in Niger State and other parts of the country by bandits that have resulted in food scarcity due to farmers’ inability to go to their farms, the Emir of Kontagora, Alhaji Sa’idu Namaska has pleaded with bandits to cease their activities to allow farmers to go to their farms as the 2021 farming season has begun.

The Emir said it is already evident that food is scarce as the 2020 farming season was affected by COVID-19 and insecurity, adding that if the insecurity continues and farmers are not allowed to go to their farms, the food situation in the country will be worsened.

The Emir, who was represented by the Niger State Chairman of the All Farmers’ Association of Nigeria (AFAN), Alhaji Shehu Galadima stated this during the Third Niger Wet Season Agricultural Inputs and Equipment Fair in Minna, the state capital.

He said: “Bandits, please allow us to farm. We need food, you also need food. If we farm, there will be food…Please, allow us to farm,” he appealed.

The Emir further called on the government to recruit more agro-rangers who will safeguard the farmers when they go to the farm.

The Niger State Commissioner for Agriculture Zakari Haliru Jikantoro assured farmers that the state government is doing its best to ensure the safety of every citizen in the state.

According to him, the tempo of banditry in the state has reduced because of the security strategies the government has deployed in recent times.

“You would notice that the government has put in place measures to ensure that the farmers will not be affected by this banditry or insecurity.”

On the Agricultural Inputs and Equipment Fair, Jikantoro said that the fair anticipates over 100 commercial exhibitors, government officials, key private sector players and participants in the two-day event.

He said the fair is to create access to improved agricultural seeds and inputs, strengthen farmer access to credit and loan repayment processes, link providers and users of agricultural mechanisation equipment and services and provide advice and information about current technologies.

The Commissioner further said that the farmers will benefit from the availability of varied nutrient-fortified and improved crop varieties that will improve life expectancy as well as support food security.

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