Dry season farming: AFAN seeks functional irrigation schemes
The All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN) has called on governments at all levels to support dry season farming through functional irrigation schemes.
The Chairman of the association in Niger, Alhaji Shehu Galadima, made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Minna on Sunday.
“We have started the dry season farming in Niger state but we are having problem of irrigation because the 18 irrigation schemes constructed by the state government have collapsed.
“Also dams and other irrigation system established by the Federal Government across the state are either not working or not functioning to full capacity,’’ he said.
Galadima noted with concern that out of over eight irrigation facilities established by the Federal Government only Tungan Kawo irrigation facility in Wushishi Local Government Area of the state is functional.
The AFAN chairman alerted that dearth of irrigation facilities would bring a set back to the 2017 dry season farming in the state.
“We want adequate water supply to our farms to make sure we get good yields,’’ he said.
He said that the more than 10,000 farmers participating in 2017 dry season farming in the state hardly access irrigation from rivers Niger and Kaduna, and other small rivers within in the state.
Galadima expressed regret that many farmers lack water pumping machines that will address their difficulty in conveying water to their farm lands.
The AFAN chairman noted that erection of dams would serve a good purpose in promoting all season farming which would in turn create wealth and jobs in addition to achieving national food security.
“If we have enough food we can as well export to other countries to boost our economy,’’ he said.