Kogi farmers count losses as flood recedes

Farmers who lost their crops and farmlands to the flood disaster that ravaged some communities in Kogi State are counting losses as harvest begins.

Some of the farmers who spoke to newsmen on Sunday lamented that their hope of enjoying a bumper harvest this year got shattered following the flood disaster.

A rice farmer, Abdulmumuni Idris, of Akpaku village in Kogi/Kotonkarfe Local Government Area, said he lost 10 hectares of rice farm to the flood.

The traditional ruler of Akpaku, Idris Ahmadu, told newsmen that many hectares of rice, cassava, maize and potato farms were destroyed.

Ahmadu appealed to both the federal and state governments to come to their aid through the provision of farm inputs to enable them go into dry season farming as the water recedes.

The Kogi State Coordinator of Small Scale Women Farmers Organisation in Nigeria (SSWFON), Hajiya Safiya Yahaya, said over 12,000 women farmers who were into rice farming across 12 local government areas of the state were affected by the flood.

She added, “the federal government has started distributing relief materials to victims, but we as farmers need inputs, chemicals and other support to enable us go back to farming, especially the small scale women farmers, because they are the ones that are into real food production.

“No women farmers, no food on the table, and if there is no food on the table, there will be no nation. We have lost a lot. Many of our farmers who got inputs under the Anchor Borrowers Programme (ABP) lost everything. We are trying to go back to the farm for dry season farming now.’’

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