Delta State Government has inaugurated a N35 million, cluster of 10 Green Houses for vegetable farming, a World Bank counterpart sponsored project in the state.
The Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources, Mr. Julius Egbedi who commissioned the project at Ukala Okpunor in Oshimili North Local Government Area of the state said that the project is a novel one which will revolutionize agriculture in the state.
According to the commissioner, “The project which is a cluster of 10 Green Houses for vegetable farming by Fadama Users Group (FUG) is the first of its kind in Delta. The Project is a subproject of the State for Employment and Expenditure for Result (SEEFOR).
“The Project is a novel one which will revolutionize agriculture in the state because the use of greenhouses is an approach to agricultural production that will expose the farmers to global best practices.
“It is expected to boost productivity, improve livelihood, incomes of beneficiaries, food sufficiency and jobs creation drive of the Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa led administration,” he said.
He thanked the donor agencies and charged the people of the community to protect the project through peaceful coexistence, saying, “The smooth and sustainable management of the enterprise is key to attracting further intervention from government and development partners.”
Earlier, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Mr. Austin Oghoro, disclosed that the project cost a total of N35 million to execute and that the greenhouses were expected to support the production of vegetables, adding that the first cycle started with pepper production.
“A total sum of N35 million was expended on the subproject for the provision of the greenhouses kits comprising of assets and inputs, capacity building, 20KVA power generating set, borehole and accessories.
“The greenhouse subproject is quite unique because the technology of using greenhouses provides a controlled environment for production with the timed application of agrochemicals and with minimal risk of pests and diseases.
“This is a way to go as the current trend globally is the intensification of agriculture using appropriate technology,” Sir Oghoro said.
The permanent secretary who thanked SEEFOR and Fadama 02588//14706+ said “With this project, agricultural development, food security and increased incomes of our rural farmers in line with the development focus of the state will no doubt be achieved in due course.
The Council Chairman, Chief Louis Ndukwe and other community leaders in their various remarks thanked the World Bank and the state government for attracting such projects to the rural community to boost agriculture, create jobs and incomes for the rural farmers.
Responding on behalf of beneficiaries and the FUG, Mr. Anthony Ejiofor, thanked the state governor, SEEFOR and Fadama for the gesture while pledging their commitment to growing the project in the nearest future.
He, however, appealed to the state government to create a motorable road to the farm and security to ensure that the project was not vandalized, saying, “I want to assure that we will replicate the 10 greenhouses in the shortest time,” he said.
The highpoint of the event was the commissioning of the 10 greenhouses by the Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources, Mr. Julius Egbedi.