By Chinyere Anyanwu
Katsina State government says it has generated over N393 million in taxes and levies from the agriculture sector, despite the spate of growing attacks on the farming communities across the state.
This was disclosed recently by the Governor of the state, Aminu Bello Masari, during the launch of the 600 hectares Date Planting Campaign in Katsina.
The event was organised by the National Association of Date Farmers, Processors and Marketers of Nigeria (NADAFPAM) in collaboration with the Katsina government.
According to Masari, “1,249,551 short-term and long-term jobs have been created mostly among youths and women with over N13 billion generated as income for agricultural entrepreneurs across the 34 local government areas of the state and N393 million as income to the state government as taxes and levies.”
The governor added that the implementation of various projects and programmes in the agricultural sector as contained in the State Agricultural Restoration Project had impacted positively on the lives of small and medium-scale farmers across the state.
His administration, he said, would continue to support farmers to enable them to have access to improved farming techniques and agricultural inputs.
In addition, he said the government will enhance surplus production to close the gap of food shortages created by banditry in the front-line local governments.
Masari said, “from the inception of this present administration to date, additional 605,525 hectares have been put under cultivation thereby recording an increase of 172 per cent. Also, about 1,910,440 metric tonnes, translating to an increase of 192 per cent was recorded in production.”
On his part, the National President of NADAFPAM, Dr. Hussaini Dikko, said the association has trained 60 youths on date farming and is planning to empower the youths financially to enhance productivity in the state.