A rice farmer, Chief Silver Ejezie, says about 300 hectares of rice farms at Omeligboma, Oko in Oshimili South Local Government Area of Delta State were washed away by this year’s flood.
The farmer, who lamented the situation in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday, November 13, 2019 in Asaba, said it was a colossal loss for the farmers in the area.
He said that by the farming calendar, the dry season farming for rice would have commenced this November in the area, but the land area was still flooded.
He said that though the flood waters, which almost submerged the entire community, had started receding, the flood level was still high preventing those who left the community from returning.
According to Ejezie, the farmers in the community lost close to 300 hectares of rice farm to the flood.
“We are appealing to government to come to our aid and support us with seedlings and other inputs to enable us take advantage of the dry season farming.
“Though the dry season rice farming would have started by this month, the flood has not receded.
“We hope and pray that with government’s support, we shall effectively utilise the dry season to recover some of our losses as a benefit from the good pricing for rice products arising from the closure of the border,” he said.
Ejezie also hailed the closure of the border and ban on importation of rice by the Federal Government.
He said that the year’s flooding was really a setback to rice farmers in Delta, adding that it would have been a bumper for them giving government policy.
By Ifeanyi Olannye