The administration of Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola in the last eight years in the State of Osun has been characterised by series of developmental programmes and policies. As the progressives government is winding down, starting from this week, OSUN DEFENDER presents the Economic Development Scorecard beginning with Agriculture and Food Security
As part of the measures of banishing hunger in the state of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola promised to support farmers to attain increased food production, better storage and delivery. He also promised to assist farmers in exploring profitable markets and market opportunities for their produces.
Ogbeni Aregbesola’s Approach towards fulfilling the Promise
Towards fulfilling his promise of banishing hunger, Ogbeni Aregbesola designed Osun Rural Enterprise and Agriculture Programme (O-REAP) which is aimed at achieving food security, wealth and job creation, youth empowerment, economic transformation and making the state the hub of agriculture and an emporium of commerce in the South-West. Some of the strategies adopted by Ogbeni Aregbesola’s administration in this sector include land acquisition, land clearing, tractorisation and private public partnership as well as provision of an enabling environment for farmers to maximize their potential. O-REAP programme also focused on different agricultural initiatives that include Osun Broilers Out growers’ production scheme. The Beef Chain Development Programme, O-REAP Fish Farm Estates, Osun Fisheries Out-growers production scheme, O-REAP Youth Academy, Agricultural credit, Farm Service Centres, Provision of storage facilities and seedling production as well as farm settlement scheme.
- Over, 28,000 farmers have been supported and empowered through various agricultural support programmes carried out by the Ogbeni Aregbesola’s administration and now earning their livelihoods from farms.
- Diversion and fraud in input subsidy regime eliminated
- Over 90% input distribution efficiency resulting from the introduction of private led agro input distribution scheme
- Over 20,000 hectares of farm land validated thereby increasing the size of land available for agribusiness
- Improved storage facilities for the farmers in the state thereby reducing post-harvest wastage
- Improved market linkages for farmers to dispose their produce
- Over 2000 agricultural cooperatives formed and supported
- Addition of over 30,000 hectares to the available farmlands for agricultural purposes resulting from the creation of Osun Agricultural Land Holding and Planning Authority (Osun Agri Land Bank)
- Wider penetration of agro inputs (seeds, fertilizers, etc) across the farming communities hence removing the stress of farmers for travelling to the state capital to procure fertilizers and other agro inputs.
- Over 5,000 youths trained in modern agricultural practices
- Steady supply of food items for the successful implementation of Osun Elementary School and Health Programme (O-MEALS)
- The supports given to farmers’ cooperative societies have attracted a lot of people to venture into agricultural production.
Agricultural projects executed
Land Sourcing, Allocation and Validation
- Over 30,589 Ha of land sourced for agricultural land bank.
- Land validation and perimeter survey in 9 farm settlements using GIS and Remote Sensing Technology, a first in the history of farm settlements in south west Nigeria resulting in the following:
Ø 20,000 Hectares (Ha) of farm land validated in the 9 farm settlements
Ø Discovery of more land areas
Ø 4,211 Hectares Ha of land made available for reallocation to small holders
- Land Allocation:
Ø Over 33,200ha of land allocated to 950 farmers across the state.
Ø 210Ha of land allocated in Kuta for all-year round vegetable farming.
Ø 2,000Ha of land secured for additional cattle hubs in Ede and Ejigbo local government areas.
- Over 3,070.3 Ha of land cleared; 6,209.4 Ha of land tractorised across the state.
- Two new farm settlements created on a landmass of 4,012 Ha and have been allocated to 350 small, medium and large-scale farmers
- Private-led agro input distribution scheme established to ensure penetration of farm inputs across all the farming communities in the state.
- Reconstitution of the fertilizer distribution committee to ensure transparency in the scheme.
- Over 5,000 MT of fertilizers distributed to farmers at subsidized rate
- 65 farm input distribution centres established to ease access across the state.
- 1,830 rural farmers in 61 local communities given farm inputs from the state in collaboration with UNICEF.
Agriculture Land Bank
- Sourcing of 30,000 Ha of land for the creation of an agriculture land bank
- Development of an Executive Bill for the creation of land bank and establishment of an Agriculture Land Planning & Development Authority; Bill at the House of Assembly.
- Loans: Over N2,601,669,532 given to farmers as various loan facilities.
- N40million loan disbursed to support pig farmers in the state
- 3,645 farmers across the state benefitted from the sum of N476,350,000 from the Government Guaranteed Agriculture Loan Scheme
- 268 farmers benefitted from the sum of ¦ 45,662,065 from the O-REAP Loan Scheme
- 66 farmer cooperative groups given N153.6million agriculture finance loan.
- 4 youth cooperative groups consisting of 40 youths empowered and currently engaged in cattle fattening.
- 1(1,000 MT) capacity warehouse in Oyan completed (warehouse abandoned since 1991)
- 1 (500 MT) capacity warehouse in Osogbo completed (abandoned since 2009)
- 92(10MT) cribs constructed across the state to serve as On/Off Farm Storage Facilities.
Quick Impact Intervention Program (QIIP)
Novel in the development of agriculture sector is the implementation of Quick Impact Intervention Programme for farmers (QIIP) designed to promote agriculture financing by granting soft loan to practicing farmers. This programme has been implemented under the thriving cooperative societies. This programme has created a number of direct and indirect jobs for the people of Osun.
- A total of two hundred and sixty-one (261) farmers’ cooperative groups with a combined membership of four thousand, nine-hundred and fifteen (4,915) had been granted credit facilities to the tune of five hundred and thirty million, nine hundred and fifty-four thousand, one hundred and seventy six naira and thirty kobo (N530, 954,176.30). The table below summarizes the intervention of government through the QIIP.
- Over 5,000 new farmer cooperative groups registered in the state and about 11,500 farmers have been financially supported through which 16,000 new jobs were created.
- 2,000 farmers were supported to plant 1.3 million plantain suckers for refined plantain flour production
- Over 220 farmer groups financed to run the Osun Broiler Out-grower Scheme, OBOPS
- ¦ 500m loan to 4,000 small holder farmers
- Cooperative farmers in Kuta-Ikoyi were supported to cultivate a 250 hectares vegetable farm cluster
- Cooperative groups are cultivating a-80 hectare yam farm cluster, for Elubo (Yam flour) production
- ¦ 153.6m agriculture finance loan for 66 farmer cooperative groups.
- Rice production at Onilapa (Ogbagba) on 410Ha of land aimed at increasing production yield from 1.5tonnes/hectare to 5tonnes/hectare.
- Supported FOB venture in Ede to increase its production capacity from 25,000 to 100,000 broilers per annum
- At least 50% of contact QIIP farmers linked to O’MEAL School Feeding Programme.
- Ongoing work on the establishment of soil and food laboratory to enhance the capacity of the State to monitor soil conditions at a relatively low cost and also to stimulate agricultural production and processing value chain on consistent and sustainable basis.
- Through the FADAMA 3 project, over 1,200 subprojects including boreholes, access roads, mini dams, abattoir, poultry pens, pig farms, agro-processing, agro-forestry were executed in 72 communities with 15,000 persons as direct beneficiaries.
Tree Crop Project
- 500,000 cocoa seedlings, 6000 kola & 6000 bitter kola seedlings to be distributed free to cocoa and kola/bitter kola farmers respectively across the state.
- 64,000 oil palm seedlings and 25,000 cashew seedlings raised free distribution to farmers.
- Under Ogbeni, Osun forestry reserve has grown to 90,000ha
- Partnership with Feg-Agro Nig. Ltd (Osun Fisheries Out Growers Scheme [OFOPS] Scheme Manager) and the Association of Aquatic Farmers & Agro-processors of Nigeria (AAFAN), State of Osun branch to promote catfish production; processing for value addition, and support to 400 fish farmers (Outgrowers) with the sum of N212m.
- N126m provided to promote commercial cage culture practice for production of male tilapia on Okinni River, train youths and create over 100 jobs.
- Okuku Fish Farm under Osun Fisheries Outgrowers Scheme supported with N36, 800,000 to promote fish production and train youths.
- Partnership with TUNS Farm Nig Ltd (Osun Broilers Outgrowers Production Scheme [OBOPS] Scheme Manager), to promote broiler production, empower poultry farmers and create jobs with the sum of ¦ 539, 435,200
- Some 578 farms have been stocked with over 3,654,612 day-old-chicks from inception in 2011 and over N200m profit has been accrued to outgrowers in the scheme.
- FOB Ventures Abere-Ede road supported with N20m to expand its target production of broilers from 25,000 to 100,000 broiler units per annum.
- 78Ha cattle hub established at Oloba in the State of Osun with a capacity of 10,000 cattle
- Additional 400 Ha and 1,600 Ha of land secured by the state government for development of two additional cattle hubs
- Successful fattening of 1,200 rams involving youths at three locations across the state in 2012 and fattening of 1,000 rams in one location in 2013
- Infrastructural development including construction of farm manager’s quarters and multi-purpose centre completed, at the cattle hub
- Construction of two commercial and six small holder feedlots
- Construction of pig breeding and fattening centres (modern training and demonstration centres that will serve local farmers in the state with piglets) at Leventis Foundation, Ilesa
NB the above–named schemes supply chicken and fish to O-MEALS food vendors to feed Grades 1 – 4 pupils in public schools in the state.
Animal Health Care (Veterinary Services)
- A new veterinary clinic built in Ejigbo and an 8-room kennel built in Osogbo Veterinary Centre.
Investment and Partnerships
- 204.39 Ha allocated to International Institute of Tropical Agriculture for the establishment of a research and training farm at Ago Owu Farm Settlement
- Annual farmers’ open day, Odun Alagbinla instituted by IITA to distribute improved seed and seedlings to farmers across the state
- Commercial horticultural projects to produce tomatoes, pepper and sweet melon under greenhouse conditions.
- Construction of centralised modern abattoirs at Iwo, Osogbo, Ilesa and Ile-Ife as first phase in partnership with Hanfirqul Nig. Ltd commenced.
- Establishment of Commodity Purchase Scheme in conjunction with Unicapital Limited for maize and soyabean.
- An Agric farm produce market development project on an initial six hectares of land is ongoing.
Training of Youths in Agriculture
- The O-REAP Youth Academy established as a deliberate strategy to give youths a sustainable career in modern agriculture.
- 1,606 OYES Cadets trained in modern agriculture at the newly established O-REAP Youth Academy located in the 9 federal constituencies for increased food production
- 40 youths sponsored to Germany for intensive training in modern agriculture.
- 96 secondary schools assisted in arable crop production, fisheries and livestock production systems/infrastructure in 2013.