Buhari Approves N24.4bn For Smart Irrigation Scheme
January 13, 2023
Executive vice chairman and chief executive of the National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI), Prof. Mohammad Sani Haruna, has announced President Muhammadu Buhari’s approval of N24.4 billion for phase one of the nation’s smart irrigation scheme.
Haruna said the country was already promoting multi-crops season farming programme.
He said as part of an all-year round bumper harvest plan, the federal government has resolved to establish six Agricultural Machinery and Equipment Development Institutes (AMEDIs) in each of the country’s geopolitical zones.
He said the institutes will teach farmers not only mechanized farming but modern farming techniques.
The NASENI boss said Nigeria had been collaborating with Czech Republic and Jordan on modern agriculture and manpower training on mechanised farming.
Haruna spoke yesterday at the foundation laying of AMEDI in Obudu, Cross River State for the South-South.
He said, ““The administration of President Muhammadu Buhari had laid the foundation of ensuring multi-crops season farming programme in Nigeria by approving N24.4billion for the Phase One of Smart Irrigation Scheme. The proliferation of mechanized farming is needed to meet the targeted bumper harvest all-year round which informs the need for local production of tools and equipment and hence approval for the six institutes nationwide.
“One of the targets of implementing bilateral agreement between Nigeria and the Czech Republic approved by President Muhammadu Buhari and managed by the Presidential Implementation Committee hosted by NASENI is to make agriculture attractive to the youths by deploying mechanization and technology.
“NASENI experts trained recently in the Czech Republic and others in Jordan in modern agriculture are among the best Nigeria has ever produced in Agricultural Technology with capacity and know-how in the application of advances in Agricultural Technology especially green Agriculture.”
The EVC said six agricultural institutes will be established in each of the nation’s geopolitical zones with those in phase one sited in Lafia (Nasarawa State for the North Central); Mbutu-Mbaise (Imo State for the South East and Obudu (Cross River State for the South-South).
He added, “Each of the six geo-political zones of Nigeria is allocated an AMEDI to meet the equipment needs of the Nation. Three out of these six (6) Agricultural equipment-based institutes are being developed in phase one. These are AMEDI-Lafia, Nasarawa State for North Central; AMEDI Mbutu Mbaise, Imo State for South East; and Obudu in Cross River State for South-South. Lafia and Mbutu are expected to be commissioned in March 2023.
“The institutes are mandated to invent and produce tools, parts, systems and equipment and machinery for cultivation, plantation, weeding, harvesting, shelling, processing and preservation through backward integration and domestication of foreign technologies in Agriculture copied by well-trained staff of NASENI.
“AMEDI Obudu is one of the two selected by Jordanian Partners of NASENI for the pilot of an all- inclusive modern agricultural food traceability project being implemented using IOT devices for global acceptability of Nigerian food and cash crops to enhance foreign exchange through export of agricultural products.
“The AMEDIs will teach farmers not only mechanized farming but modern farming techniques using technology for enhanced yields per hectare of farm land for bumper harvest and profitability.
In his speech, Governor Ben Ayade commended the Federal Government for promoting the agricultural sector.
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