How Akeredolu fought for the development of farmers in the South
Ondo State governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, has secured a N200 billion facility to farmers of five major cash crops at a single digit interest rate.
The cash crops are cocoa, cashew, oil palm, shea butter and sesame seeds.
The decision to support the farmers was arrived at the bankers’ committee meeting of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) .
The CBN facility had been restricted to rice farmers for so long, excluding Cocoa and oil palm sector.
Akeredolu, whose state is a leading producer of Cocoa, took the battle for the inclusion of Cocoa and Oil palm sector to the highest level of the National Economic Council (NEC) where he made a breakthrough for the farmers.
Commissioner for Agriculture Otunba Adegboyega Adefarati said the development is one singular opportunity Ondo State’s cash crops farmers have been yearning for ages to take their trade to the world stage.
Adefarati, who praised God for making this possible during the present administration, noted the efforts put in place by Akeredolu is commendable across board.
According to him, the contention of Ondo State, a leading producer of cocoa and major producers of oil palm, is to convince the CBN to advance the facility to cocoa and oil palm sector as it did to rice farmers.
Adefarati was of the view that with a single digit interest rate facility, cocoa, oil palm and cashew farmers would be able to get the necessary inputs to improve their production.
Hailing the NEC, which Akeredolu took the campaign to and the Bankers’ Committee for approving the facility for cash crop farmers,
Adefarati enjoined cocoa, oil palm and cashew farmers to take advantage of the opportunity by approaching their banks to access the much-needed loan.
He called on the Federal Government to set up a Presidential Committee on Cocoa Production like it did for some other sectors to ensure the Cocoa Rebirth Revolution, saying this is the surest way to maximise the country comparative advantages in cocoa production