By Godwin Tyonongu
Yam Dealers Association (YDA), Mararaba branch, has appealed to the newly appointed Minister of Agriculture, Chief Audu Ogbeh, to introduce incentives that could motivate the farmers to produce sufficient food for the country.
Vice chairman of the association, Misan Domoeroem, in a statement, stated that with a personality like Ogbeh who had wealth of experience in the sector, they were not in doubt that many innovations would come to bear in the sector.
Domoeroem said: “At the moment, the Nigerian farmer does not value his occupation much because the end results of his toiling day and night are not always seen when the farm produce finally get to the market place.
“You see that despite the fact that our farmers don’t have fertilizer and other incentives at their disposal to work, they still try their possible best in ensuring that they produce food; they do this under very strenuous condition; we feel the new minister of agriculture should do something that can motivate the farmers so that the sector can start booming like what happened in the 1970s.
“Again, the way things are done in this country, it does not encourage those of us; it is not easy for us to access loans in the banks; there are no preservation facilities for us to operate properly in the markets where we find ourselves. We would want everything about this sector to be taken seriously so that we can move on like other countries such as China.”
The statement further lamented how they the dealers were undergoing hardship in transporting their goods from one part of the country to another due to the lingering fuel crisis, saying President Buhari should act fast in tracking down the situation as it was adversely affecting the their trade.
According to the statement, agriculture is a critical sector that if handled well can tackle the unemployment saga that the nation is facing by providing employment for the teeming population of youths.