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Over 10m farmers nationwide benefit from anchor borrowers programme -RIFAN



No fewer than 10 million farmers nationwide have benefited from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Anchor Borrowers Programmes, National Deputy Secretary, Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria (RIFAN), Alhaji Iliyasu Awodi has said.

Awodi made this known in an interview the Nigeria News Agency in Abuja on Wednesday.

NAN reports that CBN anchor borrowers programme was inaugurated by President Muhammadu Buhari on Nov. 17, 2015.

It is intended to create a linkage between anchor companies involved in agro-processing and small holder farmers of the required key agricultural commodities.

While noting the benefits of the scheme to farmers, Awodi said that the multiplier effect of the programme was enormous.

“More than 10 million are engaged through the programme nationwide and it has helped in job creation.

“Farmers and millers are employing many people at the grassroots. For example in Kura, Kano, you could see the number of people employed,” he said.

On the quality of rice produced in the country, Awodi said:“We are already competing with the international community since we can produce our rice with the same quality being produced abroad.

“Already there are countries within Africa and in the Middle East that are now planning to buy our rice and that is why RIFAN is intensifying efforts to ensure we have enough rice not only to feed Nigerians but to export”.

The deputy secretary RIFAN advised the Federal Government to keep Nigeria’s land borders closed for a further period to put in place measures that would completely eliminate smuggling and revenue loss to the country.

“So the status quo should be maintained until sanity is brought to the borders,” he said.

Edited by: Bayo Sekoni/Isaac Aregbesola

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