Farmers in Lagos State have appealed to both the state and the federal governments to come to their aid through the provision of irrigation facilities for planting of crops and other farm produce during the dry season.
The farmers who lamented lack of support from government for dry season farming, complained about spending huge amount of money building wells, boreholes and piping for irrigation purposes.
The Chairman, All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN), Lagos State Chapter, Otunba Femi Oke, in an exclusive interview with Daily Trust in Lagos said farmers in Lagos needed help from both the state and the federal governments as the 2015 dry season commenced.
He said: “As regards irrigation, we have not seen any assistance from both the state and the federal governments. All what our farmers are doing now is land preparations and how we can sink borehole and lay pipes across the farms for the forthcoming dry season. Just recently, exactly on the 22nd of November, we had people from the federal ministry of agric that came to Igbodu in Epe for the cassava processing centre which the federal government is trying to establish in six geo-political zones of the country.
“I heard them saying that they may likely get us irrigation facilities because they are having about 25 hectares for cassava production. Where they want to cite the cassava processing centre is very close to the river so, they can easily do that. We are also trying to bring more of our farmers to the cooperative so, we need more assistance, especially during this dry season period.”
According to him, with over 300 hectares of lands in Epe area of the state as cassava farmland, farmers needed more assistance to protect their investments during this dry season.
He said government should realise that helping farmers is like helping the nation because of the crucial role they played in providing foods for the country.
“We have provided vast land for our people, especially in Igbodu Ishiwo road in Epe axis, the association and other farmers have gotten over 300 hectares of cassava farmland and other vegetables and crops for us to plant. So we will need assistance in this axis like in Badagary axis and Ikorodu area such as Gberigbe, Igbalu and other places that are very close to Ikorodu like Imota.
“These are the areas where our farmers in Lagos are really farming including Agbowa and we will be very happy if governments could come to our aid, both at the state and federal levels, and provide irrigation facilties for us in these areas.