From Ayodele Ajoge , Birnin-Kebbi
Kebbi State government has early in the week commenced 2023 aerial spray of migratory quelea pest across the front line local government areas in the state.
The ceremony which took place at Sir Ahmadu Bello International Airport Birnin-Kebbi according to the State government was to ensure food security in the state.
Governor Nasiru Idris who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Alhaji Yakubu Bala Tafida, said the state government is determined to fight any menace that would truncate the successes being recorded in the agricultural sector in the state.
Tafida explained that pests, especially Quelea birds, remained a serious threat to the production of grain crops, adding that control measure is also necessary in order to ensure undisrupted agricultural activities in this year’s farming season.
He added that it is a great pleasure to mark the commencement of the 2023 wet season control of migratory quelea bird and other pests in the state.
Speaking earlier, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Mr Joel Aiki described the intervention as timely maintaining that farmers had just harvested their dry season rice and millets.
Mr. Aiki stated that the wet season farming and crops are maturing, farmers are busy in their farms to ensure bumper wet season harvest, however, Quelea birds have started attacking farms.
Pointing out that the state stood as a corridor through which the pests gained entrance into Nigeria from Benin and Niger Republics.
Speaking on behalf of Yombe Nigeria Limited and Aixel Nigeria Limited, the Contractor handling the aerial spray, Alhaji Samaila Yombe-Dabai, immediate former deputy governor of the state explained that the aerial spray would be conducted in Argungu, Bagudo and Kalgo local government areas of the state.
He called on the state government to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the company to position itself for prompt response to any unexpected pests attack, promising that the operation would be done perfectly in accordance with specifications and expectations.