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Insecurity: We’ve Made Progress As Residents Now Sleep With Their Two Eyes Closed In Ibarapa – Makinde
… As Gov. flags off annual input support for 20,000 farmers
Governor ‘Seyi Makinde of Oyo State, Wednesday, said that following series of security challenges in Ibarapaland, he has taken various steps to ensure that the people of Ibarapaland and, indeed, the whole of the state could sleep with their two eyes closed.
The governor made the disclosure, while Flagging-off the annual input support for 20,000 Oyo State Farmers under CARES project, held at the Oyo State College of Agriculture and Technology, Igbo-Ora.
Makinde maintained that the problem of insecurity had existed before he assumed office, stressing that one of the promises he made on the assumption of office then was to tackle security challenges.
He said: “The issue of insecurity brought me here the last time and I remember that I made a comment that we needed to tackle those challenges because it is the only way it can affect our economic prosperity.
“Farmers in Ibarapa could not freely go to their farms because cows are invading their farms. Well, since that time, we have taken various steps to ensure that the people of Ibarapa land and, indeed, the whole of Oyo State sleep with their two eyes closed.
“It is a problem that has been existing even before we came into government, and one of the promises I made then was to tackle insecurity challenges. And the question to take home is – can anybody here imagine Oyo State without Amotekun?
“It is one of the initiatives we brought forward. Before we came, there was nothing like that. Yes, there may still be few areas we need to improve on but we all should work together with Amotekun. So, we have to keep moving together because the government alone cannot do it. We expect you to work with us and the security agencies.
“Today, we are here to flag off the programme that will believe will contribute to economic prosperity; the annual input support, the 20,000 Oyo State farmers. While we were planning to start this programme last year, we targeted 10,000 farmers and we saw the names of all of them. But by the time we started calling them, we realized they were not farmers but we have been able to address those issues.
“Let me also state that something that usually happens with this kind of intervention after the government provides the necessary assistance, the relief does not get to the real people. We have made sure that this no longer happens in Oyo State. We have the data of the farmers and we are constantly updating it. If there is any real farmer we have not captured in our data, they should come to us and we will include them in our database.
“The smallholder farmers are important to us. We know you are the custodian of our food security and that is why we must do everything within our power to support you. We have listened to all the challenges you are facing including irrigation, getting the best seedlings that will assure higher yields, and also fertilizers. We have heard you and we feel your pain. We will continue to keep you in focus and we promise that we will take action in your interest and make your life better.
“Your Acting Rector, have used the opportunity of our coming here to tell us few things. I have heard all you said on the issue of accreditation and subvention. He did not mention anything about your capital vote, He only talked about your subvention, which is about N78m Naira and your actual need, which is like N10m Naira differential. I believe I have seen a request like that and I want to promise you that I will approve it.
“To whom much is given, much is also expected. We will come regularly to check your books and ensure the benefits from the enhanced subvention are felt here. And for your capital projects, I will ensure that whatever we put in, you must access, at least, 70 per cent of it and execute the road here so that when I come here next time, I will see the impact of this government.”
“For OYSCATECH, we will work with you to ensure all your courses are accredited. For you our farmers, I will share with you some plans we have made for you later today. For example, we are partnering with people in the private sector to lower the prices for hiring tractors for you. The government will be encouraging investment to provide some of this heavy-duty equipment to meet your needs,” Makinde assured.
Earlier in his address, the Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Ojekunle Ojemuyiwa, said the launch of CARES was aimed at ensuring the people of the state recover from the effect of COVID-19 and to make small farmers become financially buoyant.
“No doubt, the governor has a good vision for the state. So, I appreciate the governor for the love he has for the farmers because of this programme.”
“For the sustenance of our economy and in a bid to eradicate poverty, hunger and unemployment in the state, Governor Makinde has commissioned various projects in the agriculture sector. And to add more to the success story, another programme, CARES, is being launched here today.”