Published On: Mon, Feb 26th, 2018


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Agriculture is one of the sectors that commanded priority in the Dickson Administration. In the past six years, the administration has made sustained efforts to make strategic investments in the agricultural sector with the aim of putting Bayelsa State on the path of solid economic productivity. A visionary leader who would always opt to explore fresh opportunities for the development of Bayelsa State and the welfare of her citizens, Dickson did not hide his concern over the massive implications of the State’s sole dependence on allocations from the Federal Account. The Governor found it disturbing at inception that the internally generated revenue of Bayelsa State, the hub of the nation’s oil economy, was a paltry N50million per month on the average. Although, the Administration has adopted measures to jerk up the State’s IGR to between N500 million and N800 million per month, Dickson’s solution to the sole dependence on Federal allocations from the oil economy was a well-planned revolution in Agriculture.

He holds the firm view that the only route to economy prosperity in Nigeria is massive investments in Agriculture rather than the over reliance on Oil.Image 13

Armed with the belief that Agriculture was the only solution to the harsh economic realities confronting most states across the country, Governor Dickson devoted valued attention to Agriculture. The mission is to create a strong, diversified economy through investments in Agriculture, Tourism, and Power in Bayelsa State. The Administration exploited the vast opportunities offered by this sector that holds the key to economic prosperity in the state outside of Oil.

Image 12The Dickson Administration saw the urgent need to exploit to the full the comparative advantage Bayelsa State  has in large scale production of Rice, Palm produce, Aquaculture, Banana, Plantain, Cassava and Vegetables in Nigeria. The Administration invested in mega Aquaculture projects with two Israeli companies, which are presently under construction to produce 3,000 tons of Fish annually.

The government also took steps to effectively exploit the opportunities offered by the Bayelsa State vegetation which is suitable for three cycles of Rice production. Expectedly, the State under Dickson, ventured into Rice production and the out-come is the high quality Restoration brand of Rice owned by the government. It is to the credit of the visionary leadership provided by Governor Dickson and his unflinching commitment to Agriculture that Bayelsa State has 4,000 hectares of Rice farm at Peremabiri; 5,000 hectares at Isampor and 2,000 hectares at Kolo.

With the well planned investment in Rice production and the quality attention given to the Agriculture sector, it is incontestable that Bayelsa State has the capacity to grow and produce the Rice that will feed Nigeria, West Africa and for export overseas. The solution to the capital flight that goes into the importations of millions of tons of Rice in Nigeria every year lies in the rice farms of Bayelsa!

The Dickson Administration also ventured into collaborative investments with credible partners in the bid to promote investments

in the Agriculture sector. The Government partnered with Ostertrade Engineering and Manufacturing, KFT\DPP International APS, a Hungarian\Danish consortium, to establish a cas-sava starch processing plant with a capacity to produce 600 tons of industrial starch per annum and an our growers scheme of 600 hectares cassava farm. In readiness for the massive agricultural activities expected from this multi-billion naira investment, the State has concluded a Seed multiplication farm on a 40 hectares land at Ebedbiri for the Cassava farm.

It is also important to note that the state has a palm plantation of 1,200 hectares which could be expanded to 2,000 hectares at the current location. The administration is fired by the firm conviction that Bayelsa has the potential to be in the league of countries like Malaysia and Indonesian Oil Palm production.Image 11

With the vast potentials in the Agricultural sector and the billions of investment that have been made in the sector, the Dickson Administration found it expedient to prepare the state for the export market with the ongoing construction of the International Cargo Airport in Bayelsa. It is deliberate that the airport, with a standard 3.5 kilometer runway has the capacity to land any kind of aircraft.

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