Ogun State Government will continue to take advantage of policies and projects capable of empowering residents, particularly farmers, so as to empower them with a view to making them contribute to socio-economic growth of the state.
Commissioner for Agriculture, Dr. Adeola Odedina gave this assurance in Abeokuta, at the pre-season training for farmers and the official presentation of 100 million improved tomato seeds free of charge to vegetable farmers in the state.
According to Odedina, a 10-hectare demonstration plots across the three Senatorial Districts would be set aside for the seeds donated by Raw Materials Research and Development Council (RMRDC), under the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology to launch the state’s yearly distribution of seeds to vegetable farmers.
He remarked: “This Ministry is charged with the responsibilities of pursuing local and international linkage with agencies, that have the mandate to support agriculture and farmers in the state.
“And the distribution of the seeds is geared towards empowering farmers with resources, which will help cushion the effect of hike in commodity price in the market.”
Expressing delight at the actualisation of the project, Odedina revealed that Ogun State was at the forefront of tomato production in the South-West, recalling the similar gesture from GIZ/European Union partnership, which had empowered 3,000 candidates.
Also speaking, his counterpart in the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, Mrs. Kikelomo Longe lauded the Council for its immense contributions to agro-boosting programmes in the country, saying it was targeted at farmers to produce adequate quantities of tomato, towards meeting local and international demands.
Longe, represented by the Director of Industrial Promotion, Engr. Kayode Akintanmide enjoined the participants to maximise the various financial inclusion programmes and policies of the government, towards promoting Micro Small and Medium Enterprise, with one digit interest rate.
Earlier in his opening address, the Director-General/CEO, RMRDC, Prof. Hussaini Ibrahim represented by the State Coordinator, Mr. Kayode Abiola, said it was imperative for the Council to boost Ogun State’siIndustrial resources, hence the presentation of 100 million tomato seeds to sustain development in its value-chain, urging the beneficiaries to ensure judicious use of the input for a sustainable growth in tomato cultivation.
“In view of the tremendous benefits derivable from the initiative, and our drive to boost states’ Industrial resources, the council is presenting 100 million improved tomato seeds to vegetable farmers in Ogun State,” he said.
Speaking on behalf of the beneficiaries, Mr. Ade Daniel and Patricia Martins expressed joy and appreciation at the fulfillment of promise by the government, enthusing that there would be abundant yields of tomato after harvest.