The Federal Government on Friday listed Abia, Oyo and 16 others as states that will benefit from the $500 million World Bank assisted project.
This is coming on the heels of a report that President Muhammadu Buhari advised the President of the World Bank Group, Jim Yong Kim, to concentrate its intervention efforts in Nigeria only in the northern part.
The President of the World Bank Group, Jim Yong Kim, was quoted to have said on Thursday at a press conference in Washington DC, United States, “You know, in my very first meeting with President Buhari he said specifically that he would like us to shift our focus to the northern region of Nigeria and we’ve done that. Now, it has been very difficult. The work there has been very difficult.”
The Presidency refuted the report and claimed that “ignorant and mischievous people” twisted what Buhari actually discussed with the World Bank boss.
Listing the 18 states on Friday, the national coordinator of Rural Access and Mobility Project, (RAMP), Ularamu Ubandoma, said that the states will join the already benefiting ones to share from the 500 million dollars World Bank fund.
He said that the project is under the Rural Access and Agricultural Marketing Project RAAMP3.
Ubandoma disclosed this during the unveiling of selected participants in the 18 states under the RAAMP 3 project and Pre-Appraisal Mission Wrap Up meeting with the development partners in Abuja.
“The whole essence of the project sponsored by the World Bank, French Development Bank and Africa Development Bank is to provide suitable road network for rural farmers to convey their farm produce to the market to avoid losses.
“What we are doing here today is a meeting with new RAAMP states. New RAAMP is rural access and agricultural marketing and we have about 18 states that have been selected to participate in this new project all over the country.
“In the North East, we have Borno, Bauchi and Taraba. In North Central, we have Plateau, Benue, Kogi and Kwara. In North West, we have Kano, Kastina, Sokoto and Kebbi. “In South East, we have Abia and Anambra. In South South, we have Cross River and Akwa Ibom. In South West, we have Ogun, Oyo and Ondo States. These are states that emergence from the six geo-political zones.
“The new RAAMP3 will be a little different from the usual RAMP1 and 2, and we have implemented projects in seven states and these projects are almost 100 per cent conclusion.
“The only difference is that we are targeting RAAMP3 in line with president Buhari’s policy on agricultural transformation. The policy is implemented through the Green Agricultural Alternative under the leadership of the Minister of Agriculture Chief Audu Ogbeh.
“The thinking now is zero rejection of our agricultural produce at the international markets,” he said.
He further explained that the third phase of the project was to advance rural access and agricultural marketing in the selected participating states, whilst enhancing sustainability of the rural and state road network.
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Link: Amid controversy of Buhari’s northern bias, FG lists Abia, Oyo, 16 others to benefit from World Bank project