The Nigeria Agro Input Dealers Association (NAIDA) has faulted the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on the disbursement of over N850 billion to finance the Anchor Borrowers Programme (ABP)
The association argued that even with the money already spent on the programme, rice was still expensive and not available in the market.
Specifically, the National President of the association, Kabiru Fara, speaking with newsmen in Abuja, said the money spent so far on rice production by the CBN, if used to import rice, would provide enough rice for every household.
Fara noted that the planned reintroduction of the Growth Enhancement Support (GES) Scheme by the ministry of agriculture, would force the reduction of food prices in the market and ensure the availability of food commodities.
Also, he said the scheme would make the farmers happier as the prices of farm inputs are going higher, noting that the scheme can help farmers get inputs at affordable prices.
Furthermore, he said the CBN’s ABP centres majorly on rice producers while the GES centres around all value chains.
“It will have more impact than the ABP.
We are happy the minister is consulting with the African Development Bank and very soon, we the agro-dealers will meet with the Minister and encourage him to do more with the AfDB so that they can assist Nigeria to come out of the coma so that the food prices will go down,” Fara said.
Recall that the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Mohammad Abubakar hinted at plans to reintroduce the GES programme with the support of the African Development Bank (AfDB).
Implemented by the AfDB President, Dr Akinwumi Adesina, the GES allows the government to subsidise agro-inputs by 50 per cent while the state governments and farmers share the burden of the remaining 50 per cent.
NAIDA Faults CBN’s N850b Anchor Borrowers Programme