Kebbi State Governor, Nasir Idris, has launched a significant 2023 aerial operation aimed at combating the infestation of Quelea birds and controlling migratory pests in key areas of the state.
The official flag-off ceremony was held at Birnin Kebbi International Airport on Saturday, with the presence of government officials, agricultural experts, and stakeholders from the farming community.
During the event, the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Alhaji Yakubu Bala Tafida, emphasized the government’s strong determination to tackle any threats that could disrupt the progress of the agricultural sector.
Among the major challenges faced by farmers in the state, the Quelea birds were identified as a particularly serious menace to cereal crop production.
“Therefore, the aerial control measures were considered crucial to ensuring uninterrupted agricultural activities during the current farming season” Bala disclosed.
Mr. Joel Aiki, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture, commended the timely intervention, stating that Kebbi State acted as a gateway for these pests to enter Nigeria from neighboring countries like Benin and Niger Republics.
Representing Yombe Nigeria Limited and Aixel Nigeria Limited, former Deputy Governor of the state, Alhaji Samaila Yombe-Dabai, praised the State Government for its decisive action against the Quelea bird infestation.
He disclosed that the aerial spray operation would specifically target the worst-hit areas in the state, which include Argungu, Bagudo, and Kalgo Local Government Areas.
In addition to the aerial spray campaign, Yombe-Dabai urged the State Government to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the company to facilitate a prompt response in case of unexpected pest attacks in the future.