Katsina State Governor, Alhaji Aminu Bello Masari says the state government is engaged in several partnerships with the federal government, private investors and international agencies towards the enhancement of agricultural production for food security and exports.
The governor stated this when he received the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Mr. Audu Ogbe, who paid him a working visit at the Government House in Katsina.
This is contained in a statement signed by the Director General, Katsina Media and Publicity, Alhaji Ibrahim Muazzam Abdullahi made available to our reporter.
In the statement, Alhaji Aminu Masari noted that the state government has already procured 225 latest model tractors from an Indian firm, Springfield Agro Ltd., which he said will enhance agricultural production in the state.
He said already over five dams across the state were under rehabilitation to facilitate dry season farming which will boost agricultural productivity.
Governor Masari said the state government also supports farmers in the production of staple foods like rice, maize, wheat, millet, sorghum and guinea corn through the provision of fertilizer at subsidized rates and extension services to farmers.
He noted that government also plans to restore the pride of place of Katsina in cotton production as the state used to supply sixty percent of the cotton needed by textile industries in the country.
Alhaji Aminu Masari listed other areas of focus to include the massive production of Zobo for local consumption and exports, as well as the production of tomato paste through private sector engagement.
In his remarks, the Minister of Agriculture, Mr. Audu Ogbe said he was in Katsina State to discuss with the state government on areas that need the federal government’s intervention.
He identified livestock among areas of need, particularly the Sahel goat breed which is in high demand in many Asian counties.
Mr. Audu Ogbe noted that farmers in Katsina State have multiplied their yield in the last two years which he attributed to healthy policies and support to farmers by the state and the federal government.
Meanwhile, the minister revealed plans to return to Katsina State for a four-day working visit where he will interact with farmers and agents of agricultural support projects being undertaken by government and international donor agencies.