The Permanent secretary in the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Mrs. Ibikun Odusote disclosed this at a sensitization programme for farmers at Igan-Ipabi in Ijebu-East Local Government Area of Ogun on Wednesday.
She said the distribution of the phones was one of the steps being taken by the ministry to ensure food security in Nigeria. She added that the Ministry of Information Technology and relevant stakeholders like network providers had been contacted to ensure effective distribution of the phones.
"As part of the electronic-wallet which we are promoting, the handsets will be the toll with which we will communicate to farmers in the rural areas.
The Permanent Secretary said that the network providers will extend their networks into rural areas where normally they will say there is no economic viability. "The Federal
Government will be putting some support into this, they will go into the hinterlands and expand their network so that we can have access," Odusote explained.
She said appropriate measures had been taken to commence the distribution exercise before the end of the first quarter, as well as providing the farmers with solar-powered lamps for charging the phones. Odusote noted that the phones will be bought directly from the manufacturing companies;
some of which have expressed readiness to partner with the ministry and invest in the sector.So much money!
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