Cross River approves procurement proposal of 108 tractors for farmers

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The Cross River Executive Council (Exco), presided over by Gov. Bassey Otu, has approved the procurement of 108 units of  three-wheeled  tractors to small-holder farmers as part of the job creation and food security strategy.

Mr Johnson Ebokpo, the state Commissioner for Agriculture and Irrigation Development, made this known on Thursday in Calabar.

Presenting the request at the Exco meeting,  Ebokpo said that the tractors would boost government’s efforts at improving mechanised agriculture in the state.

Ebokpo said Bespoke Design Company had offered to supply the tractors at a total cost N993.6million.

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According to him, the tractors will be distributed to six youths’ cooperatives of 10 members each in all the 18 local government areas to enable them to provide mechanisation services to large scale commercial agriculture.

“The scheme is expected to create 1,080 direct jobs, 1,200 indirect jobs and improve livelihood for an estimated 2,700 rural households.

“Moreso, beneficiaries will have six years to repay the principal sum only with a three months moratorium inclusive,” he said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that there was also the approval  for land development services by the Nigerian Agricultural Mechanisation and Equipment Leasing Company (NAMEL), by the Exco.

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The Exco also approved the request for interventions in other sectors of the economy such as roads, health, education and energy, as well as three draft Executive Bills presented by the Commissioner for Justice, Mr Ededem Ani, for onward submission to the State Legislature.

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