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Northern Nigerian Farmers Forced to Pay Extortionate Fees to Terrorists, Facing Dire Consequences

A recent report by SB Morgan Intelligence has exposed a harrowing reality for local farmers in Northern Nigeria, revealing how they are compelled to pay exorbitant fees, reaching up to N100,000, to bandits and terrorists for permission to access their own farmland during planting and harvest seasons.

According to the report, failure to comply with these demands puts farmers at risk of severe consequences, including abduction, murder, or confiscation of their hard-earned produce.

 Farmers: illustration purpose. Source: Google

Communities in Kaduna State, such as Kidandan, Galadimawa Kerawa, Sabon Layi, Sabon Birni, and Ruma, have been significantly affected, with residents reporting substantial payments ranging from N70,000 to N100,000 to gain permission to farm.

The situation is not isolated to Kaduna, as the report highlights similar extortion practices in Zamfara State.

Payments vary based on the crop grown, with rice farmers paying almost N120,000 in farm levies, while Guinea maize producers are required to pay N50,000.

The report underscores the grim reality that these payments may be made in cash or with harvest revenues, with levies peaking during the harvest season.

Furthermore, the report exposes a disturbing aspect of tacit slavery, where bandits compel villages to raise and sell crops for them.

Between November 2020 and November 2023, farmers in the North-west states faced staggering taxes of around N224.92 million imposed by various bandits.

This dire situation has led to a significant decline in farming activities, contributing to a shortage of food items in Nigeria’s markets nationwide.

The report sheds light on the urgent need for comprehensive measures to address the security challenges faced by farmers in the region, emphasizing the broader impact on food production and availability.

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Ayomide | HGS Media Plus

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