Agriculture stakeholders have solicited for continuity of Fadama project in the North East aimed at providing succour for more households and communities affected by insurgency.
The stakeholders disclosed this at the dissemination workshop for Fadama III Additional Financing II Impact Assessment Report on Tuesday in Abuja.
Mr Tayo Adewunmi, the National Coordinator of Fadama III Project said that it was important for the project to continue so that more households would be reached.
Adewunmi said that the project intervention to the beneficiary households in the region during the four years was in the area of provision of food assistance and restoration of livelihood through packages of economic benefits.
“This has really enhanced income and social benefits through capacity building, training and other provisions.
“The project has been very remarkable and with the efforts of the other donor agencies, we have been able to support over 600 households, which produced a community action plan for all the local governments that are badly affected.
“Fadama project has exceeded 30,000 beneficiaries with advisory services support, capacity building, and mostly rehabilitation and reorientation of the youths for them to take agriculture as a business.’’
Adewunmi said that the World Bank had also helped the female headed families by introducing cash for work, a stipend given to take care of their children, which includes a back to school programme.
He said that the project engaged the services of the international firm – International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) to undertake an impact assessment of its interventions in the participating states.
“This can be looked upon and up scaled by the Federal Government, adding that the local government that were not reached out to are now calling for support and World Bank is about to attend to it.
“I urge Federal Government and the donor partners to consider the upscaling of the Additional Financing II (AF-II) in the North eastern part of the country based on the success story and sustainability.
“Some of the people, who left their communities are now back to their base but were not captured in the initial plans and now need support.’’
Dr Kwaw Andam, the Representative of IFRPI country office said that IFPRI’s mission was to generate sustainable solutions for reducing poverty and ending hunger and malnutrition in the world.
Andam said that the Fadama projects had become well known both within and outside Nigeria because of their numerous impacts.
“It is important to note that these impacts would not have come to light without the hard work of applying a rigorous approach, interviews, data collection, and analysis – to evaluate the interventions.
“IFPRI is proud of the achievements of the government and Nigerians through the Fadama projects and to have played a part in measuring and reporting this success.
“The Fadama impact assessment is one of the IFPRI’s success stories that will be featured in a forthcoming publication `IFPRI Making a Difference,’’ he said.
Dr Maimuna Habib, the Director, Projects Coordinating Unit (PCU), said that PCU went round the states to check on the project implementation and noticed that Fadama had done very well.
Habib said that the project aligned closely with the policy of the government of Nigeria to arrest the dwindling food situation and equally restored the economic livelihood in the region.
She said that the situation of the North East required an initial adopting of multipronged approach comprising several interventions intended to increase agricultural productivity.
“To also increase productive asset creation and enhance access to rural services, increase community entrepreneurship and institutional capacity where strong instrumental stakeholders and partners will come together to form a synergy to strengthen a common course.’’
Dr Muhammed Bello, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture said that Fadama project provided support for restoration of agricultural production activities which supported economic opportunities for women and youths.
“I strongly believe that we will get the quality of results that will impact instruments and structures of implementation of the project activities on several outcomes.
“The assessment today will no doubt capture effectively lessons learnt and provide information on the nature, extent and where possible, the effect of the Fadama III AF II project in six participating states.’’
Edited by Grace Yussuf