By Bashir Mohammed
Kano state government has purchased and distributed seeds worth N200 to tomato farmers in the state, according to the state governor, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje.
Aside other interventions, “Kano state government has so far spent over N200 million to produce tomato seeds, to be distributed to farmers for free”, the governor announced.
Ganduje made this known in Kano, during the inauguration of seed inspectors by the Minister of Agriculture, Chief Audu Ogbeh, over the weekend.
He said the government also gave N100 million to rice farmers as soft loan, to procure high quality seeds to boost their yields.
Ganduje commended the National Agricultural Seeds Council (NASC), for choosing Kano for the inauguration of its members, explaining that his administration was committed to providing high yield seeds to farmers.
The Minister of Agriculture, Chief Audu Obgeh, said quality seeds were paramount to enhancing agricultural productivity, adding that it contributed more than 50 per cent of increased crop productivity per unit area.
He cautioned that fake and adulterated seed dealers that it was no longer business as usual, stressing that the government would not hesitate to deal with those who continued to sabotage its efforts toward food security.
The minister also warned that the federal government would henceforth arrest and prosecute owners of companies that ssell fake and sub-standard seeds to farmers.
The Director-General of NASC, Dr Olusegun Ojo, said the inspectors would help in sanitising the industry and carrying out regular sensitisation of stakeholders to reposition the industry.
He stated that the council had directed its seed law enforcement officers nationwide to commence full scale surveillance and enforcement of the provisions of the seed act.