The Nigeria government says it has planned to introduce mechanised farming to boost agriculture production.
The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Sabo Nanono spoke on the policy at a meeting with farmers and other stakeholders held at the government house, Kano.
He said the introduction of mechanised farming was necessary “in order to shift from the traditional system of farming to self-reliance and sufficiency in food production.”
The minister said Nigeria has over 70 million farmers, out of which only 14,000 are experts in modern agriculture techniques.
“This is why the Nigerian government is planning to come up with a programme across 632 local government areas, where service centres would be provided to equip farmers with modern skills,” he said.
“We lack the number of experts who will go round to meet the farmers and give them the needed advice on farming techniques to improve their productivity,” the minister said.
“The Nigerian Government is determined to address the challenges with a view to boosting food production in the country,” he said.
He urged farmers in the country to enhance whatever they are doing because agriculture is the backbone of the nation’s economy.
He said the Nigerian government is planning to install 17 rice mills in Kano State as part of efforts to boost agriculture and ensure food sufficiency in Nigeria.
“The installation of new rice mills and the revival of existing ones would increase rice production output and curtail the effects of border closure on food sufficiency and security,” he stated.
Mustapha Halilu, who spoke on behalf of the farmers, urged the government to address the challenges of farming in the country.
Experts believe that the type stakeholder’s consultative forum held would go a long way to impact on input and output of agricultue productions in the country.