With the recent technological advancement in Nigeria, computers and okadas business farmer are finding it difficult to get work done on the farm. Majority of the farmers who cultivate more than 10 hectares of land are forced to reduce their hectarage to below 5. Because the manual labor is no longer available or very expensive.
The collaboration of the Central Bank of Nigeria, first bank of Nigeria Plc. Propcom, Spring Field Agro Plc. and Tractor owners and operators association of Nigeria. Farm tractors are now made available to farmers who are able to pay 20% of the cost price and agree to settle the balance at monthly installment of N150 000 per month. At this rate the total money will be settled in 24 months. The pilot project started in year 2010 initiated by Propcom in collaboration with Spring Field Agro Plc. Spring Field Agro Plc.is the marketer of Mahindra brand of tractors in Nigeria
Tractor owner and operators association of Nigeria was co- opted to guarantee and supervise member’s maintenance of the tractor and repayment of the loan. The pilot project was a huge success as all the beneficiaries paid back on schedule. This success paves way for the second batch Of 100 tractors which was distributed to farmers in the year 2011 and so far there is no single defaulter.
My personal observation is that the sincerity of tractor owner and operators association (TOAN), in the loans repayment is enticing other commercial banks like Sterlin bank and Oceanic bank, have joined in the program to make brand new tractors and implements available to farmers under the auspices of TOOAN. With this two banks in the program, the implementation is not limited to Mahindra brand of tractors alone. My friend who collected his tractor last year September, chose a Fiat new Holland brand and was sponsored by sterling bank. As this commercial banks are coming to our aid I implore farmers to join hands TOOAN and purchase their own tractors.
TOOAN has got the recognition of the federal government, state government and private entrepreneurs in the tractor and farm mechanization business. To have your own tractor brand new not tokunbo, parley with TOOAN. Approach the TOOAN in your local gov’t and register as a financial member, contribute morally and financially to the association and become reputable member, then signify your intention to buy your own tractor. Based on your contribution and character, in the association you will be recommended and you will achieve your purpose.
So get rid of the old rickety tractor that is gulping your money and purchase a new one.
The important fact in that at the balance of payment for new tractor in two years, i saw some of the tractor are still new as if they work for only six months. And many of them have not suffered any major Brake down or undergo any major repair. The engine, gear transmission and hydraulic systems are still intact. Boost food production through farm mechanization.
THE VERSATILE TREE
I will not mention the name but by the time I finish describing it I am sure you will know it. The leaf is for making thatch roof and tents in the villages. The mid rib is for making broom, the branch is for making baskets. The stern is sawn to make rafters for conventional roofing. Also for making foot bridge across rivers on farm roads. The fruit mesocarp is rich in oil. The nut is also rich in oil. The nut shell is fuel for making fire (gold smiths and black smiths). Nut shell is also used for mixing concrete where gravel is expensive. The debris from the mesocarp is also fuel for making fire. On this tree noting is useless we will study the cultivation and processing of the various products of the versatile tree in our next study.