With the aim of restoring Nigeria’s popular commodity pyramids, the Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria (RIFAN), Taraba chapter, has announced its first-of-its-kind rice pyramid in the state.
The mini pyramid currently houses over 40, 000 bags of rice, the Nigerian Television Authority reports.
National President of RIFAN, Alhaji Aminu Goronyo, who led the launch of the pyramid in Taraba State, said the pyramid was the first since the 60s when commodity pyramids were popular in the country.
“Our history shows that the economy of this country was based on agriculture through the pyramids we had in the 60s and 70s. I think from that time, we have not seen any pyramid again until today,” he said.
The pyramid is a collection of rice from farmers who are benefiting from the Central Bank of Nigeria-led (CBN) Anchors Borrowers’ Programme of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration.
The Programme, which the presidency has said was part of its efforts towards revitalizing the agriculture sector, enables beneficiary farmers to return loans and farming inputs with their produce.
The Director of the Agricultural Extension Department of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Mrs. Karima Babangida, in her reaction praised the state farmers for the development.
Babangida described the pyramid as a “clear demonstration that Nigerian farmers are taking up the challenge to ramp up production of major staples.”
“It also sits in the matrix of the President’s focus on increased food production across the country,” she said.
Taraba-based rice farmer, Tanko Andami said the pyramid was a testament to the state’s rice production capacity.
“We have 168 wards in Taraba State. There is no single ward in this state where we don’t have a paddy [farm]. There are 16 local governments in this state. Fifteen out of them are rice-producing,” the farmer said.
Groundnut pyramids were popular sights in Nigeria in the early years after independence when agriculture was her economic mainstay.