Water Resources Minister flag off 2023/24 Dry season farming in Edo

By DADA AYOKHAI

President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has given the 12 River Basin Development Authorities the marching order to end food scarcity in the country by taking advantage of dry-season farming

President Tinubu gave the order through his Minister of Water Resources and Sanitation, Prof. Joseph Terlumun Utsev

Prof Utsev was in Edo State, his first since his appointment, for the official flag-off ceremony of the 2023/2024 dry-season farming .

He was received at the Benin Airport by the Managing Director of Benin-Owena River Basin Development Authority, Engr. Saliu Ahmed, along with other top management staff of BORDA

While speaking at the flag-off ceremony, Prof Utsev expressed the great importance the federal government attaches to food security, insisting that the 12 River Basin Authorities spread across the country were established to assist the government in meeting the goal of feeding its population .

He added that as part of the renewed hope agenda of the Tinubu administration, the River Basins are expected to play a critical role in the banishment of hunger and food scarcity across the country and, therefore, urged them to rise to the occasion.

Assisted by BORDA’s top management staff, the minister planted watermelons to officially flag off the dry season farming and also commissioned projects constructed in its host communities by BORDA, including roads, bridges, and others .

In his remarks, the Managing Director of the Benin Owena River Basin Development Authority, Engr. Ahmed. O. Saliu, said that the River Basin has remained active and responsive to the Communities in her catchment States through the provision of numerous Projects which includes Dams, Irrigation Schemes, Water Schemes, irrigated farms(Songhai Model), youth training and empowerment programmes as well as roads and rural infrastructure development respectively.

He further disclosed that the Benin Owena River Basin Development Authority is at the forefront of setting up a network of Hydro- meteorological stations in all strategic locations within the catchment States of the River Basin

. He stressed that the Hydrological and meteorological yearbooks will serve consultants and all professionals who rely on hydro-met data.

The highlight of the flag-off ceremony included the planting of seedlings by the Honourable Minister, the Managing Director of the River Basin Development Authority, the Director River Basin Operations and Inspectorate, Mr AJ Ochigbo and the Enogie of Oghobaghase, HRH Ileruwa Akenzua.

Before rounding up his working visit to Edo State, Prof Utsev inspected some of the BORDA facilities and farm produce as well as unveiled the Volumes six and seven of the Basin Hydrometer Logical Year Book for 2021 and 2022

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