From Rose Ejembi, Makurdi
Armed with the desire to boost the nation’s food security, Circum Farms has colloborated with the Nigerian Air Force Investment Limited (NAFIL) to go into commercial farming.
Flagging off the first phase of the farms project which occupies about 2000 hectares of land at the Nigerian Air Force Tactical Air Command (TAC) Base in Makurdi in Benue State, Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Circum Farms, Sylvester Uzoama, disclosed that the project was an integrated farm with engineering precision that would use mechanization to enhance capacity.
He said the project plans to enhance food security in the country and create job opportunities for at least 500 people comprising of relatives of NAF personnel and its host community.
Uzoama stated further that the farm would be used to first test run the cultivation of rice, cowpea, ginger, cassava, yam and diary products on 500 hectares of land.
While stressing that the expanse of land made available for the project would be usable for over 10 varieties of crops, Uzoma explained that use of semi-skilled workers involving the engagement of extension officers, unskilled people and women participation as well as host community involvement would not only generate huge employment but promote peace among inhabitants.
Earlier while falling off the project, Air Officer Commanding (AOC) Tactical Air Command (TAC), Makurdi, Air Vice Marshal, Idi Lubo, maintained that over 500 direct jobs would be created through the project.
Lubo who empathized the importance of food security in the country expressed gratitude that the initiative commenced in the command.
The AOC empashized that with population growth and few lands, it had become imperrative for them to maximise and find ways to improve fields and farming, even as he stressed that the project when fully implemented would go a long way to enhance food security in the country and employment for the host community.
Also speaking, Managing Director of Nigerian Air Force Investment Limited (NAFIL), Air Vice Marshal Uchenna Nwagwu, explained that the project was owned by NAF personnels across the country.
Nwagwu added that NAFIL was providing 2000 hectares of land as its equity contribution while Circum Farms would provide the equipments and expertise required for the project, stressing that the initiative was designed to meet not only the needs of the personnel but also that of the communities and the general public.