Farmers Demand For Direct Relationship With Government
Farmers in Nigeria/Leadership Newspaper

Moses Oladipupo, the Deputy Chairman of All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN), Osun chapter, has called for a direct contact approach from the government.

He said this was necessary when the government needs to be assisting and dealing with farmers.

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Oladipupo made the call on Saturday against the backdrop of government programmes not getting to real farmers.

According to Oladipupo, majority of real farmers are not benefiting from government interventions and programmes because the programmes are mostly hijacked by politicians and those close to the government.

He decried the suffering and pain real farmers had to endure to keep operating, saying that a lot of them are frustrated.

The farmer noted that it was becoming difficult to encourage the younger generation to go into farming business because of so many challenges farmers are facing.

“The state government early this year called farmers to a meeting where it promised to provide farmers with land for farming, tractor and seedlings to assist them in their operations.

“So far, it is yet to fulfill the promise, largely due to the economic situation of the state which it claimed had incapacitated it.

‘’But the state government keeps assuring us of its commitment to assisting farmers in the state,“ he said.

He, however, noted that Gov. Adegboyega Oyetola, through his wife, had given out N10, 000 soft loan, each, to about 100 women farmers for vegetable cultivation, for three months.

According to the deputy chairman, AFAN had taken steps to get assistance from the Federal Government.

“ We have our national leadership working on that, but sometime because of selfish interests, after our leaders get what they want from the government, they neglect others.

“Again, when Federal government wants to assist farmers, it passes through the state government for implementation, but the disbursement of government grants becomes politicised making it impossible for real farmers to get the assistance.

“Even getting loans from banks is extremely difficult because the requirements for loans cannot be met by ordinary farmers except those connected with the government.

According to him, those connected to the government get wavers and get quick loan while ordinary farmers without any government backbone cannot obtain loan for their farming business.

“Only those that have letters from government are given recognition and given quick loan.

“Real farmers are suffering, they are frustrated, and they are surviving on subsistence.

“There is no market for their produce, buyers just buy produce off farmers at ridiculous prices and they are not getting anything (assistance) directly from the government.

“This year, the Federal government provided us with chemicals at subsided rate, but if you are not recognised, you will not get to buy from it.

“There is also time they sell these chemicals and if the time elapses, no one can buy again but even before the end of the stipulated selling time.