Gov. AbdulRazaq says agriculture remains potent antidote to poverty in Nigeria

Gov. AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq of Kwara has said that investment in agriculture remains a potent and reliable antidote to poverty in the country.
AbdulRazaq said this on Friday, when members of the Board of Agricultural Credit Guarantee Scheme Fund (ACGSF) visited him at the Government House, Ilorin.
He said: “If we really want to rise above the poverty line, the way to do that is through agriculture.
“There is a need for renewed focus on agriculture and agro processing business.
“Kwara is located in a part of Nigeria where the land is arable.
We hope to make you our partner in progress to drive agricultural growth. We hope to begin to work with you immediately.’’
The governor also called for more public enlightenment on various government’s initiatives to support agriculture.
According to him, not many people are aware of the opportunities that are available with the ACGSF.
He announced the readiness of his administration to drive its development programmes through the Public Private Partnership (PPP) initiative.
Earlier, the Chairman of the board, Mr Okokon Udo, said the scheme encourages banks to lend to farmers by providing guarantee for loans for crops and livestock production and processing.
“It mitigates risks associated with banks’ lending to agriculture through formal assurance to pay banks’ 75 per cent of the net amount in default, in line with the provisions of the enabling Act,’’ Udo said.
He told the governor that Kwara occupied the third position in the list of the states with the highest number of loans from the scheme.
“There is a need to further enlighten the public on the advantages of accessing the facilities to empower themselves and enhance their agricultural activities and income-earning capacity,” Udo further said. 

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