Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Kogi Rice Farmers Cry Out As Flood Submerged Farms

Kogi farmers who were beneficiaries of the Rural Poor Stimulus Facility (RPSF) under the Value Chain Development Program (VCDP) of the FGN/IFAD assisted project in the state have lamented over the colossal loss of their rice farms to flooding.

Kogi farmers who were beneficiaries of the Rural Poor Stimulus Facility (RPSF) under the Value Chain Development Program (VCDP) of the FGN/IFAD assisted project in the state have lamented over the colossal loss of their rice farms to flooding.

The youth and women farmers’ leaders in both Kabawa and Magajiya Clusters in Lokoja, Seidu Liman and Maryam Abubakar, who were beneficiaries of RPSF in their separate comments, stressed that the flood had further exposed them to more suffering than before.

The ultimate goal of the RPSF is to accelerate the recovery of poor and vulnerable rural people from the COVID-19 crisis and improve the food security and resilience of poor rural people by supporting production, market access, and employment.

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The affected farmers described the incident as a case of flying from frying pan to fire as several of them may develop disaster-induced high blood pressure, which may degenerate into other serious issues because their only hope of survival was taken away by the flood.

DR Stella Adejoh, IFAD/VCDP state program coordinator, lamented that IFAD-VCDP decided to help vulnerable farmers affected by the pandemic through the RPSF grant to lift them out of poverty, but the flood event pushed them back into hunger and starvation.

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She stated that a total of about 614 rural farmers, spread across the four rice-producing local government areas of Lokoja, Ibaji, Ajaokuta, and Kabba/Bunu, benefited from the RPSF grants in the form of inputs such as fertilizer, certified rice seed, and selective and non-selective herbicides, among others.

“It is very unfortunate and devastating that these poor, vulnerable farmers have now lost almost everything due to flooding. I feel very sad and demoralised over the colossal loss,” she said.

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