Ebonyi State Government and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in conjunction with the Nigeria Incentives – Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending (NIRSAL), has commenced sensitization program to accommodate both existing and intending livestock farmers in the state.
The program which is initiated by the state governor Chief Engr David Umahi, is aimed at projecting livestock production in Ebonyi state and to further manifest the governor’s zero oil economy initiative.
Speaking to Journalists after the program at the Akanu Ibiam International Conference Center in Abakaliki, the capital city, the Deputy Chief of Staff, Government House Abakaliki, Chief Okechukwu Nwatu who is also the facilitator of the Anchor borrower value chain program in Ebonyi state said over five hundred participants were in attendance in the program which is meant to aid the shift in oil dependency in the state as well as to create more jobs to reduce youth unemployment in the stateHe added that the campaign is to be extended to the grassroots in the 13 Local government council of Ebonyi state to reach out to a large number of Ebonyians with the zeal to access funds to do livestock production.
” We are also visiting all the local governments in the state, and the farmers in their various localities, to see their farms because we are not dealing with political farmers, we are not dealing with people who are farmers on the street but we are dealing with the real farmers in order to achieve the targeted goal as directed by His Excellency the governor.He said ” we are going to visit them to ensure that they are really into the farming business, because we don’t want to collect money from the bank to do a different thing other than farming”
According to him the governor has made the initiative to benefit the real farmers in the state and to create both an enabling environment as well as a befitting market for business to thrive in the state.
The deputy chief of staff however added that the program is going to benefit everyone who will work very hard.
He called on all Ebonyians who are interested in any of the commodities and have the facilities such as the accommodation, can key into the program, either in fishery, poultry or piggery.” What we cannot do is to borrow money from the bank and start building structures for individuals, but for those eager to go out into the business, who already have a structure or are willing to use their resources to build the structure, we would provide an enabling market for them” he added stating that the condition is inline with the terms given to the state government by the Central Bank of Nigeria.
Meanwhile, the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on livestock production, Barr. B Johnson Nwali and the Special Assistant to the governor on Industrial Cluster, Ebonyi Central, Chief Edwin Okah , both desk officers of the project have lauded Governor Umahi for creating an initiative which is targeted at boosting the economy of the state and for creating an enabling market for businesses to thrive in the state,