IFAD to support small-scale farmers in northern Nigeria with $900,000
In a statement on Thursday, IFAD said the grant will be offered through its rural poor stimulus facility (RPSF) to support farmers affected by COVID-19 pandemic to help them rebuild and recover.
The grant agreement was signed by Zainab Ahmed, minister of finance, budget and national planning; and Nadine Gbossa, IFAD’s regional director for West and Central Africa.
The United Nations organisation said the grant will help vulnerable small-scale farmers in Borno, Jigawa, Katsina, Kebbi, Sokoto, Yobe, and Zamfara “to safeguard smallholders’ pre-COVID gains in food security, better market access and increased income”.
According to the statement, 8,000 vulnerable small-scale farmers, through the ministry of agriculture and rural development, will receive an agricultural stimulus and resilience package.
IFAD said the federal government will procure 80 metric tons of seed (maize, rice and vegetables) and 722 metric tons of fertilizer that will support the most affected small-scale farmers.
It also said there will be training for communities on improved food production practices, including effective application of fertilizer and agro-chemicals, farm management, and climate-smart agriculture.
Commenting on the development, Gbossa said: “This funding from IFAD’s RPSF will ensure that farmers have timely access to inputs, information, and markets.”
“By supporting smallholders to mitigate this crisis through a market-led approach, basic farming activities will be sustained, facilitating post-COVID-19 crisis recovery and resilience.
“IFAD is committed to leaving no one behind and will ensure that women and youth in Nigeria have an equal opportunity to benefit from this funding.”
IFAD has financed 11 projects in Nigeria since 1985 worth $1.13 million, including $510.5 million from its own resources.