By Sunny A. David, Awka
The Anambra State Commissioner for Agriculture, Mechanization, Processing and Export, Mr. Afam Mbanefo has called on the 6th IFAD/Federal government supervision mission on Value Chain Development Program to include in their 2019 work plan, more land development programmes to increase farmers participation and utilization.
Mr. Mbanefo made the appeal when members of the team who are in the state for a four-day supervision mission called on him in his office in Awka.
Addressing the team Mr. Mbanefo while testifying that IFAD VCDP has contributed a lot in support of rice and cassava value chains, urged them to expand scope of mechanization to aid dry season farming.
The team leader Mr. Benjamin Okpukpara who said that the IFAD VCDP worked more in Anambra than other states of the federation, attributed the success to what he described as Governor Willie Obiano’s passion for agriculture.
On the fate of farmers when IFAD VCDP winds up, Mr. Okpukpara said based on the strong institution they have established, which according to him is unique the farmer can comfortably stand on their own.
The State Program Coordinator, IFAD VCDP, Mr. Nnamdi Agwuncha appealed for additional financing of the project, noting that there are still more to be done in the areas of land development and rural roads to facilitate tractorization and mechanization.
The team which later proceeded on field visit, inspected the market infrastructure constructed for IFAD VCDP Igbariam cluster, demonstration and farmer field business school, cassava farm at Agu-okwe Mgbakwu and the Youth Entrepreneur at Omogho, Orumba North Council Area.
In their separate speeches, the Chairman of Mee-ngwa-ngwa farmers Group, Mr. Benjamin Onyebuchi and its Secretary, Mrs. Winifred Muo who identified best agronomic practice in farming as the secret for high yield, noted that IFAD VCDP has launched them on the part of commercial farming.
On arrival of the team at Omogho, the Transition Committee chairman of Orumba North council area, Mrs. Ify Obinabo who spoke through her Personal Assistant, Miss Blessing Isioma while welcoming the team to the Council Area, thanked them for building the farmer’s capacity, and supplying them with various farm inputs and facilities.
The team inspected different types of products made from pro-vitamin “A” cassava by the youth entrepreneur farmers group.