By Stephen Adeleye
Lokoja, Dec. 6, 2018 (NAN) No fewer than 2000 farmers would receive loan between N300,000 and N600,000 facilitated by an NGO, Doyin and Susan Foundation, under CBN Anchor Borrowers Programme (ABP).
Mrs Adedoyin Ibikunle, the Chairperson, Board of Trustees (BoT) of the foundation, made this known during the verification exercise for beneficiaries at Isanlu on Thursday.
She said that the target beneficiaries under the Federal Government intervention programme were selected from the seven local government areas in Kogi west.
“The loan facility is for all categories of farmers ranges from N300, 000 to N600, 000 per farmer depending on the number of hectares each farmer has, which will be increased to N1 million next year.
“For today’s verification, over 1500 farmers both males and females are gathered here from Kabba/Bunu, Ijumu, Mopamuro, Yagba East and Yagba West LGAs.
“The verification exercise had previously been done for about 500 beneficiaries at Lokoja and Kogi/Kotonkarfe LGA. We have done biometric capturing for all beneficiaries about two months ago.
“My NGO is partnering with NIRSAL and CBN under the FG Anchor Borrowers Programme for easy facilitation of the disbursement without hitches and as aggregator.
“President Muhammadu Buhari is interested in empowering the farmers from the grassroots, including the graduates to help and empower them financially,” she said.
Ibikunle said that the money would be paid into beneficiaries account before Dec 30, 2018, but they would not be able to access it until the raining season next year.
She noted that 400 hectares of farm land earmarked in Yagba East in two locations, while 500 hectares in Ijumu spread across five locations, saying about 500 farmers would benefitting from Ijumu area.
“Those farmers that can afford between two to ten hectares will also be given.
“The CBN will bring offtakers to buy the harvests and pay the farmers, which should be able to have a turnover next year.
“The profit will go back to the farmers, while the capital will remain with the CBN.
“I have put in all my efforts and deployed my available resources in collaboration with CBN to ensure these 2000 farmers access the loan,” Ibikunle said.
Ibikunle, who was eyeing Kogi west senatorial seat under the platform of APC, was denied the ticket in the primaries which was allegedly marred with irregularities and imposition of anointed candidate.
She, however, assured her people that in spite her denial of the senatorial ticket; as a philantropist, she remain focused in her quest to alleviating the suffering of the poor masses irrespective of political affiliation.
She further said that her NGO had distributed relief items including food stuff worth N12 million to about 2,500 less privileged people in the zone.
She added that the foundation had also offered free medical treatment for the vulnerable in the area in April, in collaboration with its United States partners.
One of the beneficiaries from Isanlu, Mr Abidemi Samuel, commended the NGO for the gesture, saying it was the first of its kind in Kogi West as no politician has done such before.
“I see the empowerment outreach as a very good development for the serious farmers, who are not out to cheat Government or collect money and divert it to another place.
“The farmers will not be given the whole fund, but it is going to be on Anchor Borrower Programme (ABP) where all the farm inputs and materials would be provided by NIRSAL.
“The target is on cassava for now because it has composite products,” Samuel said.
Another beneficiary, Mrs Fehintola Oshabole from Ijumu, said she was so fortunate to be one of the farmers that would benefit from the program.
“We appreciate the NGO for the gesture, because she has been helping the less priviledged, needy, aged, widows and the orphans for a very long time.
“We advise other politicians to emulate her and follow her step in helping the poor in the society,”Oshabole said.