Kogi state is set to flood Nigerian markets with rice and fish by December following the mass production of the products by the state-owned Omi Agricultural Development Centre.
The centre situated in Yagba-West Local Government would be out with “Confluence’’ rice, Mr David Apeh, Special Adviser to governor Yahaya Bello on Agriculture and Rural Development, said.
“In December, God willing, the state government will be out with Kogi Confluence Rice from Omi Dam,’’ he said.
According to Mr Apeh, necessary arrangement for the December deadline, for the rice to hit the market has been completed.
“The milling factory in Omi will also serve as undertaker for other rice-producing local government areas of the state to mill all and package them for the markets,’’ Mr Apeh said.
The Omi project also has about 500 fish ponds already developed for massive fish production.
Mr Apeh expressed optimism that fish production would boost the effort of the state government to feed the people of the state and the nation at large.
He also said that plots of land have been cleared and allocated to youths and other interested groups in the area to grow different crops.
The adviser expressed the hope that with sustained commitment to the various initiatives, Kogi would soon assume leadership position in food production in the country.
“With all these, we should be the ‘’Food Basket of the Nation’’ rather than Benue which currently claims the title. We have everything it takes to achieve that.
“With the arable land, water bodies and the commitment of the present government in creating conducive environment for investors in agricultural production, we shall be up there soon.
“Agriculture is our only hope of survival now that the economy is dwindling. We want to overtake Lagos and Kebbi, taking advantage of our location,” Mr Apeh explained.