In a bid to boost cocoa production in the State of Osun, Governor Rauf Aregbesola has on Friday May 23, 2014 distributed over 500,000 hybrid cocoa seedlings as well as sales of agro-chemicals at subsidized rate to cocoa farmers across the state.
The state governor also affirmed his readiness to give over 40 million naira loan to cocoa farmers in the state before the end of next June.
Governor Aregbesola who was represented by the Commissioner for Agriculture and Food Security, Mr Wale Adedoyin stated this at the flag-off ceremony of the distribution of tree crops, hybrid seedlings and agro-inputs worth more than five million naira for 2014 planting season.
While distributing the seedlings to the farmers, Adedoyin noted that agriculture was the mainstay of the country’s economy before the discovery of oil. He described the agriculture sector as a reliable source of revenue and a major panacea to any economic crisis.
He maintained that states of the federation felt the impact of recent dwindling in allocation from the Federal Government due to abandonment of the agriculture, while calling on Nigerians to go back to the basis to save the country.
Adedoyin who promised the farmers that the present administration would continue to support them to meet the challenges of crop production, enjoined them to reciprocate the gesture by making judicious use of the inputs for increased production.
Earlier, the Co-ordinating Director in the Ministry, Dr. Isaac Aluko expressed hope that government’s efforts on the farmers would soon improve their production capacity and boost the state economy.
Some of the farmers who spoke with Bioreports appreciated the state government’s efforts and promised not to jeopardize the confidence reposed in them.
Some of the items distributed freely to the farmers apart from 500,000 cocoa seedlings were 6,000 improved kolanut seedlings, 6,000 Bitter kola seedlings as well as agro-chemicals which were subsidized by fifty percent among others.