Ekiti farmers decry delay in accessing FG's agriculture loans

 Some farmers in Oye Local Government Area of Ekiti have expressed worry over delay in accessing the Federal Government's guaranteed loan and other farms inputs.
The farmers, under the banner of `Congress of Farmers’, headed by Mr Ezekiel Ishola, expressed the worry in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Oye-Ekiti on Thursday.
Ishola said that the farmers depended on the Federal Government’s promise to assist them with funds to boast their farming activities.
``Our members have registered under various agriculture programme of the Federal Government since 2015 and have been expecting the government to disburse the soft loans as promised.
``Many of us abandoned other sources we used to access funds with the hope that the soft loan from the Federal Government would serve us better, but our expectations are yet to materialise.
``The delay will surely affect productivity at the end of this farming season because some of us did not have fund to carry out our farming activities,’’ he said.
Ishola said that government, hoping to diversify the country’s economy, ought to be proactive in releasing funds to farmers without delay.
He appealed to the Federal Ministry of Agriculture to resolve all bottlenecks causing the delay so that farmers could still make use of the fund before the farming season runs out.
The chairman urged farmers not to be discouraged over delay but should thrive to endure, noting that farming was still the best occupation capable of sustaining the nation’s economy.
Ishola told NAN that the current hike in the prices of rice, maize, beans and other foodstuffs was as a result of government lips services toward agriculture.
He appealed to local and state governments to play their parts in promoting agriculture.
According to him, the sector is in a better position to increase government revenue generation.


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