No fewer than 21,000 women are expected to be part of 60,000 direct beneficiaries of a 200 million dollars World Bank agric funded project in Nigeria.The Head, Corporate Communications of Nigeria Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending (NIRSAL), Anne Ihugba, made this known in a statement.
She said the project, known as Productivity Enhancement and Livelihood Improvement Support (APPEALS), which would be executed in six states of the federation, would also target 360,000 farm household members as indirect beneficiaries.
She stressed that the project would be “deployed in Cross River, Enugu, Lagos, Kogi, Kaduna, and Kano States, targeting 60,000 beneficiaries and 360,000 farm household members as indirect beneficiaries.
It is anticipated that 35 per cent of direct beneficiaries or 21,000 individuals will be women.
Additionally, the project has a dedicated sub-component to benefit women and youths that will allow them develop agri-businesses that are expected to create jobs and improve their livelihoods.”
According to her, this is shown at NIRSAL’s signing of a Memorandum of Agreement and Action (MoA) with APPEALS.
She noted that the project was meant for development, financing and supporting de-risked and optimised agribusiness projects.
She equally noted that NIRSAL through the project would ensure “improvement of value addition along the cassava, cashew, rice, poultry, aquaculture, cocoa, wheat, tomato, maize, ginger and dairy value chains in a sustainable manner.”
Ihugba said the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of NIRSAL Mr. Aliyu Abdulhameed, had at the signing of the MOA, assured that APPEAL had found a trustworthy, reliable and capable partner that shared the project’s objectives of improved value addition among others.
Abdulhameed according to her stated that NIRSAL would deploy its technologies toward the formation of Agro-Geo-Cooperatives for selected commodity value chains through geospatial mapping, soil suitability tests, Bank Verification Number (BVN) enrolment for farmers among others.
She further stated that the National Project Coordinator of APPEALS Project, Dr. Amin Babandi, expressed delight at what he described as a “turning point” in the project’s life cycle.
She explained that he further said to achieve its objective of enhancing agricultural productivity and improving value addition, APPEALS would focus on women and youths empowerment, infrastructure support to agri-business clusters, technical assistance, knowledge management and communication among others.