The Lagos COVID-19 Action Recovery and Economic Stimulus Programme (Lagos-CARES) has taken a proactive step in supporting the agricultural sector by distributing a range of farm assets to 1,531 processing and producing farmers in the state. The distribution event, held at the Lagos Farm Service Centre in Agege, is part of the Lagos state government’s commitment to alleviate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the removal of fuel subsidies.
Jonathan Obayemi, the state Project Coordinator for FADAMA, highlighted the significance of the initiative in mitigating the effects of both the pandemic and fuel subsidy removal. The programme is part of a collaborative effort between the Federal Government, 66 State Governments, and the World Bank.
Obayemi emphasized that this distribution is a continuation of the Lagos CARES programme, which seeks to provide support to farmers affected by the pandemic and policy shifts. The recipients, totaling 1,531 beneficiaries, join a previous cohort of 10,000 farmers who have already benefited from productive and processing assets under the Lagos-CARES programme.
The comprehensive initiative aims to assist a broad spectrum of beneficiaries. These beneficiaries, sourced from 37 Local Government and 57 Local Council Development Areas, are set to receive inputs and participate in an agriculture infrastructure improvement programme.
Obayemi stressed the ongoing nature of the Lagos CARES programme, stating that over 10,000 farmers have already benefited directly from it, with further phases set to support more farmers. The programme indirectly impacts even more families, with over 100,000 families benefiting from its various initiatives.
The distributed farm assets include essential tools for farming and processing such as cages, water tanks, fish tanks, water pumps, sprayers, gas burners, and generators. Obayemi urged the recipients to use these assets judiciously to enhance their agricultural productivity and improve their livelihoods.
The recipients expressed their gratitude for the support. Tai Benedict, Chairman of the Bosere Farm Group in Epe, praised the government’s efforts and called for continued support for farmers. Afusat Suleimon, Chairman of the Alubarikaloju Fish Processing Group in Ibeju-Lekki, lauded the initiative for its positive impact, particularly during the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
This distribution of farm assets underscores the Lagos-CARES programme’s commitment to enhancing food production and ensuring the resilience of the agricultural sector in Lagos State.