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"I will make kogi Holland of Nigeria" Yahaya Bello promises Kogites.

Gov. Yahaya Bello of Kogi has pledged to
make the state be the Holland of Nigeria in
terms of dairy milk production and other
livestock products for other states to
patronise.
Bello made the promise at the Kogi State
Agriculture Summit, tagged: “Moving
Agriculture To The Next Level”, on Friday in
Lokoja, as part of activities to mark his two
years in office.
“In Holland, everyone knows that Holland
produce more than a quarter of dairy milk
and meats for Europe and America.
“Kogi will be the Holland of Nigeria where
every other state in Nigeria will come and
buy milk and other dairy products.
“They will also buy meat, hides and skin,
bones, horns and even cow faeces for
manure, which will translate into cash for
our people.
“We are looking for opportunities to make
money for our people.
“If you have a parcel of land that you are
not using, what will happen is that the
pastoralists will come and you rent it to
them for money.
“Our youths and women will learn how to
breed and keep these cows as well.
“And what will happen is that we shall have
hire cross breed cows that will produce
more milk and high quality meats where
other states can come and buy,” Bello said.
The governor added that the state
government was looking for opportunities
and how to utilise them.
“They said I am friend to Fulani herdsmen
and hate farmers, but they are all
falsehood on the pages of newspapers and
television.
“We are telling the people that we are
tolerant in Kogi, we love our neighbours
and seizing and maximising the best of
every opportunity.
“Very soon we will tell our Fulani brothers
not to take their cows across border to sell
again.
“We will ask them to drop their cows in
Kogi, and we will rent your land to them to
stay.
“A land where people can come and buy,
pay tax to government and they will settle
the land owners.
“That your land that is there and not
generating anything will become a hot
cake.
“These are the various benefits we will
derive from our coexistence with Fulani
herdsmen.
“This is the way we are going to go; in the
next six months we shall begin to see the
economy of Kogi transforming very rapidly.
“The Federal Government and international
agencies are bringing money, grants to
Kogi to support livestock production,
including keeping these cows in form of
ranches in one particular area with
facilities called ‘cattle colonies’”.
The governor restated his determination to
support President Muhammadu Buhari in
implementing his manifestos as far as
revolutionary in agriculture was concerned.
“We are empowering our youths to ensure
that they have improved well being.
“The era of free money is gone. It is time
for us to bend down and work to make
ourselves rich by returning back to
agriculture.
“We must return back to farm. Let us key
into various programmes of this
government, especially in agriculture.
“All that is required is your interest and the
land.
“The government is supporting the people
and adding value through cottage
industries, so that farm produce can be
sold with adequate gain.
“You own your land, we shall give you fund,
farm implements and create the market for
you, what else are you waiting for?
“Why can’t we tolerate our Fulani bothers
and sisters who have lived with us for a
very long time? And you want them to
leave now to go where?
“We have to be tolerant, we have to tolerate
one another, it is out of tolerance that we
gathered here today.
“We develop the culture of tolerance by
accommodating one another.
“Hold on to your land, we will teach you
how to use it judiciously to make huge
money in the state; our land is our oil
wells that can never dry,” Bello said.
Earlier, the state Commissioner for
Agriculture, Mr Kehinde Oloruntoba,
commended the governor for making the
necessary funds available, which had
brought about the huge success recorded in
the sector under two years.
According to him, the state government
invested over N2.5 billion in agriculture
last year.
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“We now have functional equipment at a
cheaper rate for farmers, and 50,000
tonnes capacity rice mills to be installed,”
said the commissioner.
He said that the Federal Government had
selected 135 farmers in the state to access
N4.3 million loan each for poultry
production.
He added the state had 500 hectares of
rice farm and clearing another 500 hectares
with a total target of 2,500 hectares.
The news Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports
that representatives from the Federal
Ministry of Agriculture, International
Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) and
other stakeholders also spoke at the
summit.

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