Governor Dikko Radda of Katsina State has inaugurated a 12-man committee to investigate the beneficiaries and implementation of the federal government’s Anchor Borrower Programme in the state.
In line with its developmental functions, the CBN established the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme to create economic linkages between smallholder farmers and reputable companies (anchors) involved in the production and processing of key agricultural commodities.
The core of the programme is to provide loans (in kind and cash) to smallholder farmers to boost agricultural production, create jobs, and reduce food import bills towards the conservation of foreign reserves.
It was reported, however, that the smallholder farmers either did not refund loans given or, as cooperatives, made the cost of their produce out of reach of Nigerians.
Mr Radda’s media aide, Ibrahim Kaula, stated in Katsina on Saturday that the governor mandated the committee to investigate the government’s role in the programme and to determine its level of commitment.
“The committee is also to identify beneficiaries of the programme and determine whether they paid back the loans they were given.
“It was also mandated to provide suggestions that would assist the state government in overcoming challenges hindering the programme’s successful implementation,’’ Mr Kaula stated.
He added that the committee has the secretary to the state government, Abdullahi Garba-Faskari, as chairman and Aliyu Isah of the governor’s office as secretary.
Mr Kaula also stated that Mr Radda charged the committee to justify the confidence reposed in its members by diligently discharging the assignment.
The committee is expected to submit its report in two weeks, beginning on December 7.