Federal Government of Nigeria and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD)- Value Chain Development Program (VCDP)
has commended Enugu state Governor, Dr Peter Mbah for his support to Agricultural programmes in the state
State Programme Coordinator of FGN/ IFAD-VCDP Dr Edward Isiwu, gave the commendation at the Enugu State Value Chain Development Programme Steering Committee meeting held Thursday, at Dannic Hotel, New Haven,Enugu.
Dr Isiwu, while highlightting the achievements of IFAD -VCDP in the state, attributed the successes of the programmes to Governor Mbah who approved fund for the programs. He
He thanked the Governor for his benevolence and prompt provision of counterpart funding for IFAD projects in the state and the prime position he gave agriculture in his developmental trajectories of Enugu state.
Isiwu recalled how he was at ease to meet the Governor for counterpart funding within two months of his administration.
He said Governor Mbah was more interested in performance and the provision of deliverables to the people of the state, than any other consideration, and so, wasted no time at releasing the fund which had helped IFAD to provide some facilities.
The achievements through the payment of counterpart fund are: installation of
12 solar powered boreholes, construction of 5 mini bridges, 3 market stalls, 2 market stores, 4 Cassava processing Centres, 3 Rice mills.
Others are 55 water pumps distributed to rice farmers, 115 knapsack sprayers, more than 20 weighing scales, 5 fufu pounders, 10 tricycles, 500 fertilizers, power tillers, 25 starter packs for confectioneries, motorcycles, water pumping machines, tractors, among others , across five local governments in the state.The five local government areas are Aninri, Enugu East, Isi-Uzo, Nkanu East and Udenu .
Isiwu also commended the governor for flagging off the construction of roads that would open up access to farms across the state.
In his address, the chairman of the Steering Committee, the Enugu State Commissioner for Agriculture and Agro Industrialization, Hon Patrick Nwabueze Ubru, thanked IFAD for its support of agricultural development in the state, noting that the vision of the Mbah Administration in the agricultural sector was to “feed Ndi Enugu, making our state the food basket for Nigeria, while also becoming a leading exporter of cash crops through the implementation of “enabled extension services. We firmly believe that by investing heavily in these areas, we can transform Enugu State’s agricultural sector “
Ubru also revealed that to achieve its vision and goals in agriculture, the state government was committed to establishing Special Agro-industrial Processing Zones (SAPZ) across the three senatorial zones of the state. He th urged IFAD to fully support this vision by extending its support services beyond the five local governments where it currently operated in the state.
On his part, the Commissioner for Labour and Employment, Pharm Chika Ugwuoke, sued for collaborative partnership of IFAD and other World Bank Projects with ministries, especially with the Ministry of Labour and Employment, in order to enable job creation and statisticsal documentation of the outcomes, while the Commissioner for Human Development and Poverty Eradication, Hon. Dr Malachy Agbo, also asked IFAD to expand its scope of operations in the state by the following year, pledging the support of the state government so long as the projects were geared towards poverty alleviation and eradication.
Speaking on behalf of farmer organisations that constituted the alliance forum, Dr Godwin Abonyi thanked the state government for its efforts in revamping the agricultural sector, saying the quality of attendance of the meeting from the SSG’s Office, Government House, ministries and MDAs was commendable.
While also thanking state government for its milestone achievements in peace and security, he urged the government to beef up security enough to contain farmer-herder clashes as that had the capacity to hinder its efforts towards a robust agricultural sector in the state.
Present at the meeting were the Secretary to the Enugu State Government, Prof. Chidiebere Onyia, represented by SSA to the governor on Legal Matters, Barr. Juliet Okonkwo; Commissioner for Agriculture and Agro Industries, Hon. Patrick Ubro; Commissioner for Labour and Employment, Pharm Chika Ugwuoke; Commissioner for Human Capital Development and Poverty Eradication, Dr Malachy Agbo; SPA to the Governor on Donor Relations, Hon. Dubem Onyia, SPA public Finance, Prof. Obiamaka Egbo, SPA Delivery, Ozed Afigbo, SSA to the Governor on New Media, Reuben Onyishi; Programme Manager, Enugu State Agricultural Development Programme ( ENADEP), Dr Samuel Ogbonna Onyishi; Chairman Isi-Uzo Local Government, Hon. Barr. Obiora Obeagu; Chairman Aninri Local Government, Hon. Bennett Ajah; Chairman, Enugu East Local Government, Hon. Livinus Anike, traditional rulers led by Igwe Abel Nwobodo, SPCs of other World Bank Projects, stakeholders in the agric sector, IFAD partners, among others.
The Secretary to the State Government, Professor Chidiebere Onyia, was represented by the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor, SSA on Legal Matters to the governor, Barr. Juliet Okonkwo.
Author: Maureen Ikpeama