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Anambra Agric Ministry plans post COVID-19 palliatives for farmers

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WITH agriculture, being key sector of the Anambra State’s economy, the state’s Ministry of Agriculture has evolved measures aimed at curbing post COVID-19 hunger with some palliatives.

  This is to ensure that the state will be hunger-free by the time the state will have overcome the coronavirus pandemic.

Commissioner for Agriculture, Mechanisation, Processing and Export, Nnamdi Onukwuba unveiled plans for the palliatives an during interview with an Information Officer, held shortly after a brief meeting of the ministry’s management staff at the ADP Complex, Awka.

The commissioner said the ministry had since secured state government’s approval to launch the 2020 flag-off of farming season, through a virtual means immediately after the 14-day lockdown order with distribution of inputs.

According to him, inputs such as rice seedlings, cassava stems and maize as well as water pumping machines will be given out to farmers at a later time.

Mr Onukwuba also announced the ministry’s plans to further sensitise farmers on importance of hygiene at farm gates with regards to washing of hands before entering or leaving the farms as well as maintaining social distancing.

On the long term measures, Onukwuba said the ministry had set out to evaluate where the state would have ample land to use to install the irrigation pumps at various critical points close to other developed farm lands secured for expansion of the state’s agricultural goals.

He said that the state would like to develop up to 3,000 hectares to be added to the farming community of the state; this would go a long way in providing enough food during post COVID-19 era.

And on a personal level, the commissioner said that as part of helping government’s efforts in tackling effects of coronavirus in the state, he donated 10kg bags of rice to all his age grade members at Onitsha.

He also supported this with N2, 000 each to the women folks in the age grade.

The commissioner also said that his association, `The G36′ donated 260 bags of rice to four major churches in Onitsha, two of which are Catholics, and two Anglicans, to help to cushion the effect of the lockdown.

Onukwuba said he was working with leadership of his ward  for a relief package to at least help the less privileged in the area

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