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NNPP Tackles RSG Over Poor Handling Of Agric Sector … Wants Enough Fund For Agric

The New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) in Rivers State has expressed worry over the state government’s poor handling of agriculture sector as currently put in 2012 budget.
The party in a statement made by its chairman, Deacon Prince Enyi Princewill, during an interview with The Newswriter in his office in Port Harcourt, said the inability of the state government to allocate enough funds and enforce budgetary discipline is adversely affecting the agric sector.
The NNPP boss who is an ageiculturist cum political scientist, said having currently studied the 2012 budget estimate as presented by Gov. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, he has observed that not enough attention has been paid to encourage agric development in the state, neither has the government shown the quest for improvement.
Deacon Princewill said that agric is the mainstay pf a very successful economy and the government should consider the importance of the sector because no other sector is more important than agric, even doctors would not give their patient any medication unless he or she has eaten good food before administering his drugs.
Furthermore, Princewill held the view that from analysis agric contributes about 42 percent to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Products (GDP) quoting CBN as a source.
Agric, he stated, is the greatest employer of labour and the easiest way to address poverty is to assist farmers.
“This is the appropriate time for the state to transform its agricultural sector. The state is not predestined for misery, desperation, poverty and hunger, but there is no political will on the part of our political actors to follow up action on the vision to transform agriculture,” he stated.
“Rivers state,” he went on, “and indeed the nation has what it takes and power to change the situation by reversing the trend of malnutrition, unemployment, hunger and poverty. Modern commercial farming is a necessity for poverty eradication and food scarcity, therefore the sector must be given full attention.”
He therefore called for supplementary budget. Sector which he wanted the government to pay attention to, is the energy sector, saying that it will go a long way for the employment of youths and ameliorate the poverty in the state.
Also speaking, a community leader Chief Lloyd Oyile Eze Rugwu II noted that despite the school buildings, the children are still studying under trees, government should therefore make sure that schools built are utilized adequately as well as health centres.
Princewill frowned vehemently at the situation where the health centre in Ogbakiri has been without a doctor, adding that any doctor sent there was always absent whereas everything has been put in place including doctor’s quarters.
He called on health boss to urgently call the doctor in charge of Ogbakiri health centre to order and institute a total monitoring of the health sector in the state.
He held the fact that government cannot be everywhere and are not omnipresent therefore its monitoring should be spread and try to incorporate the opposition parties as they are under RSG. They should not be partisan but be general not as PDP government. The government should spread appointments and establish a unity government where everybody should be carried along because it is no victor, no vanquished after the election.
“We also want the government to look into the quest of parties in Rivers State and to release the back load of funds owed by RISEC because government knows that RISEC is not truthful in their claim and requested government assistance in getting the funds fully disbursed to the opposition parties as the governor has unanimously ordered the release of the funds to the parties.” ###

Senibo A.Atagbara

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