Farmers Association Seeks More Government Interventions In Agriculture
By Adetokunbo FAKEYE with agency report
The All Farmers Association of Nigeria has appealed to the Federal Ministry of Environment to extend government intervention to smallholders farmer in Nigeria.
According to the association, this would help ameliorate the impact of climate change being faced by farmers across the country.
National President of the association, Mr Kabir Ibrahim, as reported by Voice of Nigeria, VON, made the appeal when he led the association to pay a courtesy visit to the Minister of State for Environment Dr Iziaq Salako in his office in Abuja, the nation’s capital.
He also noted that farmers need ecological interventions as this would help them in improving food security and production.
"We are here as a wakeup call since Mr. President has already declared a state of emergency to the attainment of food security, we are here to appeal to you, to extend intervention to our farmers or the vicinity of smallholder farmers so that we do not suffer this flooding and loss of revenue and thereby affecting the attainment of food security.” He explained.
He also stressed that smallholder farmers are the engine room of food production in the country but suffering from serious effects of climate change.
"Due to climate change, we have experienced serious problems of flooding, which has become almost an annual event. Flooding in 2022 was devastating, and quite a number of farmers lost their entire investment.
"The release of water from Lagdo Dam in Cameroon compounds farmers’ problems as it contributes to the loss of livelihoods", He stated.
Mr Ibrahim also noted that the association is ready to work and collaborate with the ministry in achieving it mandate.
"It is in that light that we found that there is absolutely a need for the All Farmers Association to really collaborate with your ministry in a bid to achieve an agricultural boost in Nigeria. We need food to improve Nigeria", He said.
He added that the issue of climate change is a clarion call for everyone across the world.
In response, the Minister of State for Environment, Dr Iziaq Salako, says the
environmental sector is very central to achieving food security in the country, as it is one of President Bola Tinubu’s priorities.
He said it is very important to work with All Farmers Association of Nigeria to ensure a robust food production in the country.
"Like you have mentioned, even if you plant crops, and floods washes it away, or floods washes away your fish farms, there cannot be food security or if the land is degraded, and whatever you plant will not grow, or if there is droughts, then there cannot be food security, and all these things are mandates of the Federal Ministry of Environment. So, it’s therefore very important that we work hand in hand with farmers to ensure that we have the best and better farming processes", He said.
He also appealed to the association to work and corporates with the administration of President Bola Tinubu to ensure that food is secure, thereby preventing hunger in the country.
It is very, very important that we ensure food security and also eliminate hunger in the society and people get something to eat. He stated.
The Minister also emphasised the need for the association to adopt farming methods like agroforestry that protect the environments and also produce fruits, adding that this would help in sustaining the environment.
“I want to assure you that the Federal Minister of Environment, will support you as much as we can, we do not have a mandate that goes directly to agriculture, but we can prevent things that affects agricultural outputs, it is part of our mandate to prevent flooding, if we prevent flooding then It can affect you positively, it’s part of our mandate to work against desertification.
"If we prevent desert encroachment, it can help you positively. If we prevent drought, it will also help you positively. So our own is majorly to prevent some of the things that can be negative to agricultural practices, and I want to assure you that we will continue to work in that manner to ensure that we can support you so that you have land to farm and your members won’t suffer loss from disasters, like flooding, but benefit optimally from their Labour", He stated.
He maintained that the Ministry, will embarked on intense sensitisation programme to educate the general public on waste management, while also calling for responsible use of fertilisers and chemicals and other imputs that goes into agriculture, which he said can be hazardous to the society.
"The Ministry is going to be engaged in intense publicity because we realise that quite a number of the issues with our environment are also fueled by ignorance. So we’re going to be working very hard in trying to sensitise and inform our people and also count on the partnership with your association in order to reach out to farmers. While I assure you of an open door policy", He added.
The Minister, however, reiterated the ministry commitment in collaborating with relevant stakeholders, including the All Farmers Association of Nigeria, in achieving President Bola Tinubu renewed hope agenda.
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