Farmer decries difficulties in farmland acquisition | Independent Newspapers Limited
Newsletter subscribe

South West

Farmer decries difficulties in farmland acquisition

Posted: Apr 3, 2015 at 8:35 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

The Managing Director, Alova Farms, Lagos, Mr Goke Aweda, has observed that it was becoming more difficult for farmers to acquire land for farming in urban areas.

He made the complaint in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.

He said it was regrettable that farmers are finding it more difficult to acquire land for cultivation, especially in urban centres like Lagos.

The farmer, therefore, appealed to government at all levels to address this problem, which he said was limiting agricultural activities in the country.

“Inadequate land is fast becoming a major problem for farmers as most land owners prefer to sell to real estate and property developers.

“Except for those acquired by the government, land ownership in Nigeria is largely based on inheritance, purchase and lease.

“With the increase in population and a resulting increase in housing demands characterised by urban centres, land is being over-priced, especially by property speculators.

“This, in turn, has made land acquisition difficult for farmers, especially those on subsistence level, who do not have adequate capital.

“If a farmer buys a plot of land for as high as N800,000 how will he make profit from crops he produces, considering other costs of farm inputs?’’ he asked.

Aweda called for the establishment of more farm settlements and farm clusters to stem the challenges confronting city-based farmers, who have no access to land.

He also appealed to stakeholders in the banking sector to relax the stringent conditions that are limiting agricultural lending.

“Relaxing the conditions will empower farmers to expand their businesses.

“Many farmers in Nigeria are not buoyant enough to secure the necessary collateral for bank loans.

“They are also incapable of paying high interest rates on loans, either from financial institutions or money lenders.

“This has been limiting farmers from acquiring credit facilities to acquire lands, mechanised farming equipment and chemicals needed for improved crop production,’’ Aweda said.