Some more farmers in Ogun on Saturday received free agro-inputs under the Nigeria COVID-19 Action Recovery and Economic Stimulus (OGUN-CARES FADAMA RA2) project.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the project a state and federal government initiative in collaboration with the World Bank is directed to assist farmers in six local government areas of Ogun. The local government areas include; Ijebu North and Odogbolu (Ogun East), Odeda and Obafemi Owode, (Ogun Central), as well as Yewa North and Ado-, (Ogun West).
The Commissioner for Agriculture, Dr Adeola Odedina, said this when presenting the incentives to beneficiaries in Yewa-North Local Government Secretariat, in Aiyetoro.
Odedina, represented by the Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Dr Dotun Sorunke, reiterated the importance of the OGUN CARES progamme in fulfillmentof one of the cardinal points of the present administration in ensuring food security.
The commissioner said the distribution exercise had started in Ado- and Ijebu-North Local Government Secretariats in Ota and Ijebu-Igbo respectively.
He disclosed that the beneficiaries were given three weaners (pigs), three sheep and goats, two bags of 50kg fertilisers and herbicides and garri processing equipment, rice processing equipment, among others.
“Today, our farmers have seen that this project is real.
It is aimed at supporting a little below 21,000 farmers across the State.
“Many farmers lost their means of livelihood to COVID-19, but with adequate utilisation of these inputs, within six months to one year, your farming businesses will bounce back because the agro-inputs will surely boost your farming and these animals will reproduce massively”, he said.
In her welcome address, the Project Manager, OGUN-CARES FADAMA RA2, Mrs Solape Awe, applauded the state governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun for supporting the Federal Government and the World Bank in the implementation of the project, Awe said the aim of project was to empower pro-poor and vulnerable farmers as well as those in agricultural value-chain with emphasis on youths and women who were adversely affected by the global COVID-19 pandemic lockdown.
She noted that “OGUN CARES is a multi-sectorial programme and the agricultural aspect is being implemented by FADAMA platform, in four Delivery Link Indicators (DLIs), which are, Agricultural Inputs and Services, Labour-Intensive Agricultural Infrastructure Others are agricultural assets for production and mitigating food loss and waste, as well as upgrading of wet markets to function safely to empower 20,922 farmers in all the local government areas of the state within two years.
In his remark, the Chairman, Ado- Local Government,Mr Sheriff Musa, lauded the effort of government for kick-starting the input distribution in the area to alleviate the plight of farmers.
According to him, Ota is in a vantage position over others, based on its large urban and agrarian population, large arable land for agriculture, as well as being the industrial hub of the state.
Also, Mr Gabriel Ogunyomi, Chairman, Yewa North Local Government, lauded the consideration for women and youths in the project.
He charged the farmers to make the best use of the inputs and assets to better their lives and improve the economy of the state.
Mr Titus Lasilo from Ado- Ota Farmers Community Association and Mrs Monsurat Omoniyi from Agbejere Farmers’ Association, Joga Orile, two of the beneficiaries, expressed happiness at the initiative.
The beneficiaries said that inputs and assets would turn their lots around, and promised to utilise the inputs judiciously
The Federal Government says it has trained more extension workers on modern service delivery in the country to achieve food sufficiency.
The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Muhammad Abubakar, said this while declaring open a training programme for more extension workers on Tuesday in Abeokuta.
Abubakar said the training was done in collaboration with the National Agricultural Extension and Research Liaison Services.
Abubakar, who was represented by Mr Ganiyu Oseni, a Director in the ministry, said similar training was ongoing in all the 36 states of the country, including the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.
The minister observed that extension services had declined over the years and should be revived to boost the nation’s economy.
Abubakar said that the training was the third in the series aimed at empowering extension officers with the knowledge that would help the local farmers and make the youth interested in agricultural entrepreneurship, He said the Federal Government desired adequate food supply such as rice, palm oil, goat and sheep for the people to aid foreign earnings.
The state Commissioner for Agriculture, Dr Adeola Odedina lauded FMARD for putting measures in place to bridge the gap between extension workers’ services and the local farmers.
Odedina, who was represented by Dr Dotun Sorunke, the Permanent Secretary in the ministry, said it was high time the state employed over 100 extension officers to augment the existing ones.
Odedina charged the participants to imbibe the ongoing reforms in the state, which included the Farmers’ Digital Registration and Agricultural Land Allocation Management Portal.
The commissioner said the reform would enable an electronic database of farmers in the state, as well as the electronic application and allocation of farmlands.
“Knowledge they say is power.
You can’t impart others if you don’t have the skill.
“Some of you will be co-opted to be part of it as you are closest to the farmers and know the terrain,” Odedina said.
One of the participants, Mr Fayomi Kolawole, who represented Ikenne and Remo-North local governments, expressed delight for the training.
He promised to extend the knowledge gained during the training to farmers in his community.
The Ogun State Cares FADAMA RA 2 on Friday trained facilitators, extension officers and technical assistants covering the 20 Local Government Areas (LGAs) of the state on capacity building.
The training was organised in Abeokuta for the personnel, to ensure the effective execution of COVID-19 Action Recovery and Economic Stimulus Project.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that OGUN STATE CARES FADAMA RA 2 is an intervention of the state government in collaboration with the Federal Government and the World Bank,
The aim of the programme is to restore livelihood of the poor and the vulnerable farmers, as well as maintain food security by giving grants to those in agricultural value chain affected by COVID-19 pandemic.
The programme is to assist more than 20,000 farmers across the state within two years, hence the capacity building for a successful implementation.
Declaring the event open, the Commissioner for Agriculture, Dr Adeola Odedina, said that the future was bright for Ogun in the area of agriculture and industrialisation.
According to him, the bright future will bring about food sufficiency, job creation and revenue generation.
Odedina, represented by the Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Dr Dotun Sorunke, said the training on capacity building was to equip and guide the facilitators and technical assistants to deliver maximally.
He urged the participants to imbibe what they were being taught for effectiveness and productivity.
“We put up this capacity building programme because we want you all to be transformed and we do not want you to miss the road so you don’t mislead the farmers.
“You can only give what you know because if you learn good thing, you will produce good things.
“Your work will also involve gathering of information and data capturing, so you need to be attentive and make use of every knowledge gained,” he said.
The commissioner said that the project manager and her team in the past few months had taken sensitisation programme to virtually all the LGAs in the state.
He said that the pilot scheme of the project was billed to takeoff in Obafemi-Owode, Odogbolu, Ijebu-North, Yewa-North, Odeda and Ado- LGAs.
Mrs Solape Awe, the Project Manager, gave the overview of the technical section and harped on the importance of trainings to farmers through the extension officers.
Awe advised the officers to be up-to-date in best agricultural practices to inculcate same to the farmers.
She said that the officers should keep abreast of climate- smart agriculture, timely delivery and good agronomic practices, as well as quality agro-input.
NAN reports that various project implementation officers taught technical training sections on criteria for beneficiary selection, profiling and mapping, as well as environment issues.
Mr Oluwafemi Fagbenro, a participant, from Imeko-Afon LGA, who spoke on behalf of all the participants, said the capacity building was apt as it had given them more knowledge and skills.
Fagbenro said that the training would enable the officers to get the farmers’ profile for disbursement.
He thanked the project manager for organising the training.
The recent investment drives of the Ogun State Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, to Egypt and Ethiopia, to draw more foreign investments to the State have started to yield results. This is because representatives of Arise Integrated Industrial Platform, one of the multilateral business firms he met while the tour lasted, have visited the State to explore areas of collaboration on investment. Speaking in Abeokuta, the State capital, at a follow-up meeting with representatives of the State government, the Company’s General Manager, Urban and Infrastructure Design and Senior Manager, Urban Planning and Project Finance, Messrs. Anand Koppu and Animesh Ahaskar, respectively disclosed that their establishment has a long history of successful investment in Togo, Benin Republic, Gabon, and Ivory Coast, but has decided to invest in Nigeria for the first time and considered Ogun as the best location following their initial meeting with the Governor. The representatives of the Pan-African conglomerate further disclosed that it would be exploring areas such as pharmaceutical, agro-processing, packaging materials, automobile, renewable energy, bitumen, and petrochemicals, among others for its partnership with the State. Responding on behalf of the State government, Commissioner for Finance and Chief Economic Adviser to the Governor, Mr. Dapo Okubadejo, in a statement signed by the Press Officer, Ministry of Finance, Mr. Kunke Sokunbi, maintained that the Prince Abiodun- led administration is poised to maximize the State’s potentials and natural resources, and would continue to seek and partner genuine investors to achieve this. He reiterated the determination of the government to further develop economic policies that would translate to prosperity of the State and its people, emphasing that the setting up of Public-Private Partnership (PPP) office, Business Environment Council, OgunInvest, on-going construction of the agro-cargo airport, development of economic clusters and special agro-processing zones, among others are some of the initiatives embarked upon to consolidate the position of the State as the investors’ destination of choice in the country. Underscoring the importance of PPP as catalyst to the development of the State, the Chief of Staff to the Governor, Alhaji Shuaib Salisu assured the investors of the most enabling environment for their investments. Also in attendance at the meeting were the Commissioners for Industry, Trade and Investment, Agriculture and Forestry, Mrs. Kikelomo Longe, Dr. Adeola Odedina and Hon. Tunji Akinosi respectively, the Director-General, Public-Private Partnership office, Mr. Dapo Oduwole, and Deputy Director-General, OgunInvest, Mrs. Fehintola Odulaja.