The Advocates of Social Justice for All (ASJA) has commended the strategic partnership between the Central Bank of Nigeria and the Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria under the Anchor Borrowers Programme of the federal government.
According to the group, the partnership has increased rice and other cereals in the country.
In a statement signed by its Executive Director, Felix Adadu, the group expressed confidence in the Buhari administration and the laudable initiatives of the CBN Governor Godwin Emefiele, which has helped to strengthen the economy and the well-being of ordinary citizens.
Adadu said the intervention of the CBN is gradually returning Nigeria to the era of the rice pyramid, creating jobs and stimulating the economy.
He said the provision and sale of rice paddy at subsidised rates to farmers across the country is another indication that the CBN has positioned itself as a contributor to sustainable growth and development in the country.
“We wish to commend the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emeifele, for his continuous support to the critical agricultural sector in Nigeria through various fare reaching initiatives, all aimed towards food security and sufficiency.
“Without a doubt, we state that the efforts of the CBN so far have the potential to transform Nigeria into a major exporter of rice and other farm produce. It is also worthy of note that earlier in 2021, the CBN flagged off the first-ever rain-fed wheat programme in the country, seeking to slash the importation of the food commodity by 60 per cent and save $2 billion annually in foreign exchange.
“It is on record that between September and October 2021, under the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme, the Central Bank of Nigeria disbursed N43.19 billion to support the cultivation of 250,000 hectares of maize, sorghum, soybeans and rice during the 2021 dry season farming and N5.88 billion to finance six large scale agricultural project under the commercial agricultural agri-business scheme. These and many more intervention by the Central Bank of Nigeria has positioned the Apex bank as an ardent contributor to the development of the agricultural sector in Nigeria,” the statement said.