In a bid to retrieve the 36billion loan facility released to farmers in the Northeast, the Central Bank of Nigeria has set up a task force in all local governments of the states involved.
Speaking at the inauguration ceremony of the committee in Borno, the Development Finance Officer of CBN, Maiduguri Branch, Mahmud Nyako, said that the payment of the loan varies from commodity to commodity and also from hectare to hectare.
Nyako who explained that setting up a taskforce became imperative for efficient recovery noted that the maximum portion for rice farming was two hectares and each farmer got N212,000 per hectare including labor-related activities.
”So, the expectation is that farmers at the end of harvest can pay back 50 percent of the loan and at the next farming cycle, they can use the input and pay the remaining 50 percent of the loan.” He noted
On loan default, Nyako said that real defaulters without any natural cause would be prosecuted and that in cases of natural disaster, the farmer concerned should report promptly so as to benefit from the window created by CBN for such loss.
On his part, the National Chairman of North-East Commodity Association(NECAS), Alhaji Sadiq Daware, informed that the exercise was part of the Anchor Borrowers Programme of the Federal Government and conveyed through their association.
While stating that the association was able to secure N36 billion loan from CBN for six different commodities which include rice, maize, sorghum, soya beans, sesame and cotton, Daware said the beneficiaries were duly informed that the inputs they were getting were a loan.
He expressed optimism that farmers in Borno who have the advantage of cultivating a variety of crops would enroll in the programme next season.
“With relative peace in Borno, we are optimistic that at the end of the programme, we will be able to make a substantive recovery. We expect to recover at least 80 percent of the loan to the farmers,” He said