Senate passes bill to establish National Agricultural Development Fund
Nigerian Senate on Wednesday passed a bill seeking to establish the National Agricultural Development Fund.
The passage of the bill followed consideration of the report of the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development.
Presenting the report, Chairman of the Committee, Senator Abdullahi Adamu (APC, Nasarawa West) explained that the Fund is to provide finance to support agricultural development in Nigeria.
He observed that to date, Nigeria is yet to fully implement the 2003 MAPUTO Declaration on Agriculture requiring States Parties to allocate 10 percent of its National budget to Agricultural Development.
“If this was done, Agricultural Research and Development, Food Production and Food Security would have witnessed a major leap”, Adamu said.
According to the lawmaker, the Fund is empowered to provide emergency support funding for agricultural control access to finance trans-boundary animal disease outbreak.
However, the upper chamber carried out amendments to the Committee’s recommendations in Clauses 2, 7, 10-11, 22 and 24.
It will also support service through microfinance and collaborate with development partners to support food security and agricultural modernization.
Adamu explained further that the Fund addresses key binding constraints to complete the transition from subsistence farming to modern Agriculture. This will make farmers capable of generating inclusive growth and economic diversification.
Accordingly, the Senate adopted the Committee’s recommendations in Clauses 1, 3-6, 8-9, 12-21, 23 and 25.