NIGERIA – Officials from the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) have undertaken a visit to ginger farmers in Kaduna State, aiming to assess the aftermath of a recent fungal attack that wreaked havoc on Southern Kaduna’s ginger farms.

Led by Hajiya Aisha Yakubu of the Relief and Rehabilitation office in Kaduna, the NEMA team’s mission is to evaluate the extent of the damage and formulate recommendations for potential interventions, recognizing the region as one of the world’s largest producers of ginger.

The National Ginger Association of Nigeria had earlier reported a setback in the 2023 ginger season due to the attack, causing a significant economic loss of over N10 billion (approximately U.S.$11.3 million) to the state.

While the team couldn’t immediately inspect all affected farms due to their number, the visits conducted will serve as specimens to represent the entire zone.

Hajiya Aisha Yakubu expressed sympathy for the farmers, assuring them of NEMA’s commitment to providing relief and support during this challenging time.

Farmers, speaking to the media, urged NEMA to expedite the process of delivering seedlings and relief materials to the affected farmers in the area.

Despite the setback caused by the fungal attack, many farmers expressed their eagerness to commence dry season irrigation farming to recover swiftly.

In Kachia Local Government Area, large-scale farmer Suleiman Abubakar appreciated the NEMA team’s visit and expressed hope for timely relief.

Mr. Edward Auta, another farmer, extended gratitude to Senator Sunday Katung for raising the issue in the Senate, prompting NEMA’s response. Auta highlighted the challenges faced by farmers, including legal disputes and the unfortunate loss of some farmers.

Senator Sunday Katung, represented by Wilson Iliya, a Senior Legislative Aide, welcomed the NEMA team in Kafanchan and appreciated the agency’s prompt response to providing relief to farmers in his constituency.

He acknowledged the support from his colleagues in the National Assembly and pledged to prioritize the collective interest of his constituents.

The NEMA team diligently visited ginger farmlands in various local government areas, including Kachia, Zango Kataf, Jema’a, Jaba, Kagarko, and Kaura, to comprehensively assess the impact of the fungal attack on the vital ginger industry in Southern Kaduna.

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