As a means to mitigate the effect of unemployment in the country, the Governor of Sokoto State, Aminu Tambuwal made arrangements for the provision of farmlands to farmers for Sesame cultivation.
Sesame is a flowering plant in the genus Sesamum, also called benne. It is widely naturalized in tropical regions around the world and is cultivated for its edible seeds, which grow in pods.
Globally, the market size for sesame seed, which shrunk from 2017-2020 increased and currently fetches 1,075USD per metric tonne, a development occasioned by prominent expansion of its consumption worldwide.
What the governor said
While inspecting the produce cleaning and standardisation process, the Governor noted that it will create over 100,000 jobs in the state by 2022.
“It is now clear that sesame can grow in Sokoto state and the government of the state is willing to continue to support the farmers generally and specifically those that are involved in sesame farming as we did last year.
“We have seen the positive impact and we are ready to do even more. If you don’t have a farm, go back to your local government area and register.
“Government is ready to provide more farmlands now to farmers. I hereby direct the Commissioner for Agriculture to liaise with the overseer of the ministry for local government affairs. This scheme should start immediately,” the governor said.
“Therefore, all our farmers who are interested in having farmlands should go and register with the department of agriculture of the local government.
“This is in order to see how best we can encourage our people to go back to farm. It is very important,” he added.
Earlier the state Commissioner for Animal Health, Prof. Abdulkadir Junaidu, who is also overseeing the Ministry of Agriculture, said before the government intervention less than 10,000 hectares of sesame was cultivated annually in the state.
“But the government weighed in the year 2020 the production level of sesame got up to over 34,000 hectares.
“However, we are optimistic that in subsequent years, 91,000 hectares will be cultivated.
“This is such that if bumper harvest is sustained and the weather is favourable more than 100,000 jobs will be created annually in the state,” he said.
Junaidu further said in the past year the state government in addition to its partnership with a Turkish firm on sesame cultivation, has provided free seedlings of about 350,000 kilograms of the seed to farmers in the state.
“Additionally, 500 units of sprayers, 3,000 units of liquid fertiliser – both of NPK and Urea, as well as 10 motorcycles and one unit of Hilux vehicle for extension services were also provided for the venture,” he added.
He said the produce cleaning and standardisation process undertaken by the state ministry of agriculture has produced 30,000 bags of sesame seeds.