September 26, (THEWILL) – Kebbi State is in north-western Nigeria and its capital is Birnin Kebbi. It was carved out of old Sokoto State in August 1991. The state is bordered by Sokoto, Niger and Zanfara states as well as Niger and Benin Republics between latitudes 10¬0 and 130N and longitudes 3030’ and 60E.
The economy of the state is majorly driven by agriculture with grains such as rice, millet, sorghum and others as well as fishing and livestock.
Total number of rain days also varies from the north to the south at 50 to 80 days respectively. The wet season starts from June and lasts till September in the northern parts and April to October in the southern parts.
Local government area: 21
Land Area: 14,206sqmi
Population: 4,286million @ 2019
Registered business: 41
Public primary schools: 1,587 @ 2009
Public secondary schools: 321 @ 2009
University: (2) Federal – 1, State – 1
Polytechnic: (2) Federal -1, State – 1
College of education: (2) Federal 1, State – 1
College of Agriculture: 1
Nursing School: –
Technical school: State- 3
Total Revenue: N64.95bn
Total tax: N12.067bn
IGR: N13.77bn @ 2020 (21.21% of total revenue)
FAAC: N51.18bn @ 2020 (78.79% of total revenue)
Domestic Debt: N48.03bn @ 2020
External Debt: $43.608m @ 2020
Unemployment rate: 17.25% @ 2020
Airport: Sir Ahmadu Bello International Airport (SABIA)
List List of Natural Mineral Resources Found in Kebbi State
Magnesite, Gold, Clay, Quartz, Feldspar, Iron, Copper, Manganese, Aluminium, Metalic minerals.
Tourism in Kebbi
Argungu International Fishing Festival
The Argungun fishing festival is the culmination of a four-day cultural event in Kebbi State. Thousands of fishermen line up like an ancient army, carrying their traditional nets and gourds at the sound of the gun, they pound towards the narrow river Matan Fada and leap into the water. They have just one hour to catch the biggest fish. The festival is not limited to the fishing alone. During the festival there are various cultural, musical and sporting events as well.
Another interesting festival in Kebbi state is UHOLA FESTIVAL in Zuru Emirate; this is a yearly festival of thanks given to God for spearing their lives. The festival is normally held around December/ January in all towns and villages of Zuru Area. It is at this festival that some age group teenage boys are considered matured to go into manhood while some age groups of girls also were considered matured to go into woman-hood. The festival takes two to three days of colorful events such as: Dances, Music, Wrestling exhibition of works of art and crafts. It holds in the ancient cities of Zuru area. During this festival, the local populace moves to the ancient city which is normally situated at a hilly area, because of defense against invaders.
Karishi Traditional Settlement
Karishi town is situated around Sakaba town in Sakaba local Government. This settlement is a traditional one and not yet been changed, the people there still holds to the traditional belief and customs. It is hilly and the people come down for anything, they have a fence surrounding their town and watchmen all the day against invaders. The ruler of these people is seen once a year by his subject, he only comes out once a year during one festival.
Tomb of Abdullahi Fodio
The tomb of Abdullahi Fodio the brother of Sheikh Usman Danfodio the great jihadist of the 9th century, the tomb is located at Gwandu in Gwandu Local Government Area. Abdullahi Fodio also participated in the Jihad and he played a role in the 19th century jihad, he was the founder of Gwandu Empire and rule this place until his death up to today his descendents still rule this great place.
Girmace Shrine, Zulu
This is a traditional shrine where a piece of water is surrounded by thick trees, and there in the water, there are crocodiles, this is a place of worship, the local inhabitants visit this place with sacrifice and make special request to the shrine.
Alwasa Battlefield at Argungu
Site where fierce battles were fought between the Fulani jihadist and Kabawa warriors (Gobir, Kebbi and Tuaregs) in 1807.
Yelwa Museum of Archaeology
Arts and crafts works depicting the culture of the people are kept.
Kanta Museum, Argungu
Located in a part of Argungu called “old town” and adjacent to the main market, the museum which was built in 1831, used to be the emir’s palace until 1942 and got converted to a museum in 1958. The edifice retains its historic charm; and the view from outside is of ancient northern Nigerian structure. It is a fascinating treasure house for those seeking a more reflective experience of Argungu and its environs as it showcases the history and culture of the Argungu people in arts and crafts.
Rice Production in Kebbi
Despite concerted effort by the state government to boost and modernize agriculture, it is reported to have largely remained at the rudimentary level with most of the farming communities producing at subsistence level. The problems of agriculture in the state is attributed to poor technology and lack of access to credit on reasonable terms, inadecuate rainfall, fragmentation of farmland resulting from inheritance and population growth, which has continuously reduced and individual household farm size, inability to secure farm inputs at the right time and low level of soil fertility responsible for low yield per hectare, at about 40% of the optimum.
The situation is particularly tough on food such as rice, millet, sorghum and others increasing over the years aggravated by the absence of processing industries which are capable of taking up surpluses produced. In addition, while the production of stable, the production of cash crops decreased. Most families tend to consume what their crop.
The government of Kebbi state identified its potential in agricultural and agro-allied which were maximised and it impacted positively on both large and small-scale farmers.
The state governor, Senator Atiku Bagudu Abubakar partners with agencies and private organisation for the overall development of the agricultural sector. The output is the reason Kebbi turned into the largest rice-producing state in Nigeria, the governor was then appointed the Chairman of the Presidential Task Force Committee on Rice and Wheat Production.
Considering the socio-economic importance of agriculture to food production and income generation for the people of the state, the governor initiated an agricultural revitalisation, transformation and diversification drive through partnership with the Bank of Agriculture, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
The federal government launched the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme aimed at production of food, job creation, income generation and self-sufficiency, and the rice farmers whose productivity per hectare of land has increased to an average of six metric tonnes of rice paddies recorded huge success.
Production doubled, enhanced by improved varieties, fertilizer application and good agronomical practices facilitated by the governor.
Partnership with the Lagos State government in the production of Lagos-Kebbi Rice (LAKE Rice) and other states has created a sustainable, reliable and profitable ready market for the paddies produced by farmers in Kebbi, transforming their fortunes and boosting their socio-economic standards of living.
The government’s sustained efforts in agricultural revitalisation and development have attracted investors.
The commissioning of WACOT mill recently held in the state was an attestation of the administration’s investment drive. The investment efforts have placed Kebbi second only to Kano in rice milling in the whole of the northwest zone.
To consolidate on the gains recorded in the dry season rice farming and improve output in wet the season, Kebbi has also entered into partnership with other states as well as the Moroccan Government to receive the supply of over 300,000 tonnes of fertiliser.
The administration has also procured for distribution to famers 100 tractors, 1000 ox-drawn ploughs, 100 rice threshers and 100 motorcycles for trained agricultural extension workers.
The state is encouraging livestock production as additional avenue to diversifying its economy.
Success story of rice production in Kebbi opened more doors as the US Ambassador Mary Beth Leonard joined Governor Bagudu and private and public-sector stakeholders committed to ensuring food security in Nigeria to launch a new co-investment partnership between the USAID-funded West Africa Trade & Investment Hub and the indigenous firm WACOT Rice.
The partnership is geared towards improve the livelihoods of smallholder rice farmers in the country, whose success is crucial to feeding a burgeoning population. As a result the sum $1.48 million co-investment grant is offered. It will allow WACOT to add 5,000 additional rice farmers into its special Argungu Rice Outgrower Expansion Project launched to increase local production. of Rice is a major staple in Nigeria, but production and supply in Kebbi State, a major producer of rice, has suffered a setback because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to the ambassador “We know the challenges faced by women farmers in owning lands and accessing finances and inputs — despite women being key to making a significant impact for future generations,” the Ambassador said. “We hope this activity will improve the livelihoods of women farmers and their families in Kebbi State.”
*** BY SAM DIALA & OLAYEMI SHABA