Small Scale Women Farmers Organization in Nigeria (SWOFON) is demanding from the Gombe State Government, the release of N24,895,550.00 million budgetary allocation for its activities in the 2020 farming season.
According to Mrs. Saratu Dalaky, the Gombe State Chapter Vice President, who led a delegation of some members on an advocacy visits to the State Ministries of Agriculture and Finance, the visit is to press for the release of the funds for their activities in the eleven Local Government Areas of the State.
Mrs. Dalaky told the State Commissioner for Agriculture, Mohammed Magaji Gettado that they were in his office to request him to raise a memo to the executive Governor of the State, Muhammad Inuwa Yahaya, to release and disburse the funds to small holder women farmers across the eleven LGA’s of the State.
She commended the Inuwa Yahaya led administration for increasing the budget line for women in the tune of N35 million and titled, “Support for Small Holder Women Farmers”, in the 2020 budget.
She said, the organization promotes agribusiness of women small scale farmers at the grass roots level for national food security, as such, the timely release will go a long way in addressing some of the challenges faced by women farmers.
“One of the major challenges facing the sector is low budgetary allocation to agriculture, insufficient facilities and agricultural inputs, and poor access to grants and loans especially to small holder women farmers”, she stated.
Dalaky, who went further by disclosing the project code as well as the economic code in the budget provision, also gave the budget outline into sectors/summary of coatings in the budget provision.
In his response, the State Commissioner for Agriculture, Mohammed Magaji Gettado, who described small scale women farmers as the real food basket of the national due to their output in the market, said the Inuwa Yahaya Government cannot make a positive impact in the agricultural sector without them.
He said, the administration placed very high priority on the agricultural sector, as such, will always partner with such organizations especially, receiving advises and support either ways. He then promised to go through their memo for onward submission to the Executive Governor.
On his part, the State Commissioner for Finance and economic development, Malam Muhammad Gambo Magaji who was represented by his Permanent Secretary, Alhaji Jalo M Ali, commended SWOFON for what he described as a wakeup call on them.
He called on them to keep engaging the ministry for better service so that 70 to 75 percent of rural small scale farmers are not neglected. “The ideal thing to do politically is to help the small farmers especially in the rural areas”, he said.
He assured that, “What has changed now is that, whenever the Governor is convinced on a memo for release, he doesn’t waste time in signing it’s approval”.