Islamic Bank President Inaugurates 1,000 Hectares Watari irrigation Project

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Jack Acheme, Kano

President of the Islamic Development Bank, IsDB, Dr Muhammad Aljasseer has inaugurated the 1,000 hectares expansion programme of the Watari irrigation project to further boost food security in Nigeria.

He said the project, which is part of its bilteral relations with Nigeria involves the USD 90 million dollars financing from the IsDB towards implementation of the Kano State Agro Pastoral Development Project, KSADP, with Kano state Government contributing USD 5.0 million dollars bringing the total to USD 95.0 million dollars.

He said he is happy with the project which will directly or indirectly impact lives and livelihood of the people, especially rural dwellers.

“I’m happy because this an example of how Takaful can be done. Be rest assured, we want you to have a better life. I believe other projects will be followed by this,” he said.

The Managing Director of KSADP, ibrahim Garba said the 1,000 hecters expansion project will be completed in the next 18 months.

Apart from completed works, Projects ongoing simultaneously with the Watari irrigation expansion programme under the KSADP includes: Dansoshiya Grassing Reserve Development, establishment of Milk collecting centers, upgrade of 20 slaughter houses, up grade of 5 cattle markets, support to milk markets association, Dawanu market infrastructure development. Consultancy for 70 kilometer feeder roads construction.

Aljasser also unveiled a Veterinary Reference laboratory renovated and equipped by KSADP at Gwale Veterinary Clinic, in Kano.

Aljasseer while visiting project sites said the Bank will continue strengthen it’s bilateral relationship with Nigeria in areas of Socio- economic and infrastructural development.

He commended ,KSADP, for meeting the expectations of the bank, since the objective is to reduce poverty by strengthening food security in Kano state and indeed Nigeria..

The project funded by the bank and the Lives and Livelihood Funds (LLF), has contributed to poverty reduction and strengthened food and nutrition security in the state.The bank has been monitoring Kano’s performance. I am impressed that you are working very hard to meet the bank’s expectations,” he said.

He said the Bank over the years has approved financing to Nigeria to the tune of 1.8 billion dollars.

“The 1.8 billion dollars facility for Nigeria is made up of 971 million dollars for project financing by the bank, and about 288 million dollars provided by the Islamic Corporation for Development (ICD)–IsDB’s private sector affiliate,” he said.

He further said that 477 million dollars was in form of trade operations by its trade arm, the International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation (ITFC) and 90 million dollars from other funds and operations.

“Our investment guarantee arm has provided 1.1 billion dollars as business insured and 1 billion dollars as a new insurance commitment to help attract businesses and insure them. The IsDB active portfolio in Nigeria now stands at 1.2 billion dollars and we look forward to strengthening our bilateral relations.”

He said the bank, although, already financing bilingual education in Nigeria, will mobilize further resources from stakeholders across the world to take out of school children on the streets back to the class.

“we at the Islamic development bank use to give education high premium,” he said.

He said after becoming the president of the bank, he is visiting the sub-Saharan Africa for the first time and Nigeria is the first point of call.

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