- The current economic constraint throughout Nigeria is definitely having a heavy toll on Taraba state
- As one of the consequences, the state government has been unable to pay workers' salaries for not less than seven months
- There are fears that if this trend is not reversed, hunger will affect many parts of the state due to the low output of farm produce
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If nothing fast and drastic is done in Taraba, the state will experience a serious shortage of food resulting in massive hunger.
This is coming on the heels of widespread claims that most civil servants in Taraba have been working for about seven months without receiving salaries.
A chief in the state who spoke with The Nigerian Tribune on condition of anonymity stated that Taraba farmers are mostly public workers who fund their farming business with monthly salaries and that the situation will negatively affect harvest in 2022.
Govt officials, politicians accused of diverting farm inputs meant for farmers in Taraba, commissioner reacts
In fact, the chief lamented that the possibility of a bumper harvest for 2021 is almost lost.
“This is cropping season, 70 percent of farmers in Taraba are local government staff whom many small scale farmers depend on to burst their farming activities at every end of the month.
“Our modern way of farming is purely money and the local government staff who are major farmers in Taraba have not received a salary for seven months now. I am afraid that the state is going to be in a hunger crisis by next year due to this development."
The state's predicament was also confirmed by Governor Darius Ishaku's media aide, Bala Dan Abu, who noted that the issue of local government staff is exceptional.
Giving his on view on the issue, Abu stated:
"Some of the council chairmen have failed to manage the local government resources very well. I’m not saying the local government chairmen have diverted money, but many of them have been applying for so many things which are affecting the local governments.”
According to the order of the government, the decision is to enhance farming to develop the agricultural value chain in the state.
The government made it clear that the holidays which will end in July, are not for essential workers in the state.