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Buhari releases N24bn for NASENI’s modular irrigation project

President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday approved N24 billion for the National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI) for the execution of a smart modular irrigation project.

The Executive Vice Chairman/CEO of NASENI, Professor Mohammed Sani Haruna, said this on Friday, while briefing State House Correspondents after a closed-door meeting with the President at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

He also gave reasons why the Nigeria-made helicopter was yet to commence operation in the country, even if Nigeria has successfully completed the production of Nigeria-made helicopter.

He said he was at the Villa to show the financial details of the agency’s operation to the President, adding that the modular irrigation project would enhance agricultural development in the country, enabling farmers to produce crops three times round the year.

He also said that the visit to the presidential villa was part of his regular meeting with the President to brief him on the activities of his agency, adding that the Friday’s visit was different because It included the financial report of NASENI.

“It’s not for anything suspicion, but we have been asking for funding and more funding, then you want to know the status of what is happening so far. For example, I have said to you, the 1% of the Federation Account due to NASENI, we receive only the federal government component of it, instead of 1% before it’s shared to the states and others that benefit from this.

“Last week, the President approved N24 billion for smart irrigation system, on request by NASENI. So, it is his thought if our money is remitted, why asking for further funding. Just to clarify the situation, not because of any other things, to know the status. And, of course, to give him exactly, as the Chairman of the Board NASENI, he should know to the last Kobo, what do we have, what don’t we have, to guide his decisions on matters.

“it is for the modular irrigation system. We have acquired a 10 hectare farmland on lease in Adamawa State, using water from River Benue, where this pilot scheme is starting and it is estimated that, based on the technologies to be used there, it is possible to have three multi-crop season in a year, commencing from October this year, God willing.

“The monies are for the pumps, the structure, the farming techniques, the farmers, the officers, the offices that are needed, the vehicles, and the administrative management, up to the period that we will have this demonstration farm, using modular irrigation system first model. First model in the sense that this one we’re drawing water from River Benue, of course solar powered.”

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