The Bank of Agriculture and the Delta State Government have sealed a deal to boost agricultural produce, enhance the state economy and create employment opportunities.
The Managing Director, Bank of Agriculture, Dr. Mohammed Santuraki, gave the hint on Wednesday in Asaba after a meeting with Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan.
Santuraki said that the partnership was necessary to improve food security in the country.
“Governor Uduaghan’s vision of Delta beyond oil is a very positive development because oil will not last forever,” Santuraki said.
According to him, Uduaghan’s commitment to empower the people through agriculture deserves commendation, adding that the bank had rolled out programmes to team up with the state government in the agricultural sector.
Santuraki said the bank would partner with the state government in the areas of cassava production, stressing that the state was one of the largest producers of the commodity in the country.
He said that the bank was encouraged by the Federal Government’s commitment to include cassava as one of the substitutes for wheat due to the huge amount being spent on the importation of wheat.
Santuraki also apart from cassava cultivation, the bank would encourage farmers, including women and cooperative societies, to engage in the entire production chain from farming to processing and storage, adding, “We want to finance the whole value chain.”
The Commissioner for Agriculture, Mr. Misan Ukubeyinje, observed that the bank’s partnership with the state government would assist farmers.
He said, “We will take necessary steps to ensure that the partnership works.
“We are collaborating in terms of capacity building, and you know the bank has also been dealing with farmers in terms of funding.”