Here are Agro Nigeria top picks for the week…

Osinbajo heads committee on herders-farmers clashes

For the second week running, events in the agricultural space have been dominated by issues surrounding the herder-farmer clashes.

So, it came as a relief when the Federal Government, during its National Economic Council Meeting, inaugurated a (Working) Committee of nine governors to address and resolve the persistent crises. The Committee, which has the governors of Zamfara, Kaduna, Adamawa, Benue, Taraba, Edo, Plateau, Ebonyi and Oyo States as members, is chaired by the Vice-President.

Nigeria to host ECOWAS conference on farmers-herders clashes

Still tracking the Farmer-Herder imbroglio, the Nigerian government will in February host a conference of the member states of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), aimed at finding permanent solutions to the clashes which have spread to other parts of the West African sub-region.  Minister of Interior, Abdulrahman Dambazau who stated this after a meeting with the President of the ECOWAS Commission, Marcel De Souza at the Commission’ Secretariat in Abuja, noted that the conference would also explore the relationship between the ECOWAS Protocol on Free Movement, the proliferation of small arms and light weapons, and trans-border criminal activities.

Adamawa Govt. registers 64 grazing reserves

States have also been busy at it. The Adamawa state government has registered 64 grazing reserves across the state. Commissioner for Livestock Production in the state, Isah Salihu, who stated this in Yola said 30 of the grazing reserves had been gazetted.

Kogi endorses FG’s cattle colony as more states reject proposal

In Kogi State, Governor Yahaya Bello openly endorsed plans by the Federal Government to establish cattle colonies, saying his state is ready to be the pioneer testing ground for the scheme.

He assured farmers and people of the state that the policy would be beneficial to them, adding that the state would organize a series of stakeholders’ engagement to sensitize the people, farmers, cattle breeders and other stakeholders on the implementation of the new policy.

However, there were bumps in the road, as the move to set up cattle colonies met with opposition from the governments of Benue, Taraba, Ekiti, Abia, Ebonyi, and Imo States. While the government in Ondo plans to revive ranches in the state, Oyo, Edo and Kwara State Governments have said they will consult widely before reaching decisions on cattle colonies.

Establish livestock ministry, revive grazing reserves – Herdsmen tell FG

In a related development, the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) has called on the Federal Government to establish a Ministry of Livestock Development to cater for the livestock industry and focus on reviving the existing grazing reserves across the country instead of establishing cattle colonies.  The group expressed their regret that the government had over the years neglected the 415 grazing reserves covering about three million hectares of land across the country.

AgroNigeria believes that all hands must be on deck to find lasting solutions to the incessant clashes which could hinder Nigeria’s food security and agricultural production. The Federal and State Governments must act decisively and come up with favorable solutions thereto. We are also of the opinion that there is no silver bullet in this regard.

And on to regional cooperation…

AU seeks partnership with Nigeria to end seeds importation

The African Union, (AU) has called for a partnership with Nigeria to develop Africa’s seeds industry with a view to ending the importation of seeds on the continent. Executive Director, AfricaSeeds, Dr. Kouame Miezan, who made the call at a meeting with the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh, in Abuja on Tuesday, said the organization was seeking the partnership given Nigeria’s primal position in seeds production in West Africa.

And from across the States…

Fire razes 4000 palm trees, 1000 others in Plateau

A fire incident has destroyed more than 4000 palm trees in an oil palm plantation in Sabon-Gida, Langtang South Local Government of Plateau State. The fire which raged at the weekend, also destroyed 500 cashew trees, 200 improved varieties of mango trees, oil palm seedlings, among other plants.

Fire destroys 46 silos, 36 houses, livestock in Jigawa

Similarly, the Police in Jigawa State on Monday confirmed that a fire incident, destroyed 46 silos, 36 houses and killed 40 goats and sheep in Abanderi village of Dutse Local Government Area of the state. The spokesman for the Police Command in Jigawa, DSP Abdu Jinjiri, who stated this in Dutse said the fire, suspected to have been caused by bush burning, started at about 5 a.m.

It is our view that mass sensitization needs to be carried out in a bid to educate the public on the dangers inherent in bush burning, particularly during the dry season.

We also brought you reports on efforts to strengthen the capacity of farmers both at the federal and state levels.

CBN to support tomato, cocoa, palm oil production this year

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has said it will massively support farmers to boost the production of tomato, cocoa and palm oil across the country in 2018. CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, who stated this during a visit to the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh in Abuja, on Wednesday said the move was in line with Federal Government’s quest to attain food self-sufficiency and reduce food imports.

Dry season farming: Sokoto Govt spends N3.4bn on fertilizer

The Sokoto State Government has spent a total of N3.4 billion on the procurement of 833 trucks of fertilizer for distribution to farmers during the dry season farming in the state. State Commissioner for Agriculture, Umaru Nagwari, who stated this in Sokoto, shortly after defending the ministry’s 2018 budget proposal, before the state House of Assembly Committee on Agriculture on Thursday said the state government had prioritized agriculture.

5,253 rice, wheat farmers benefit from FADAMA projects in Anambra

A total of 5,253 rice and wheat farmers in Anambra benefited from the various intervention schemes of the FADAMA III project last year. Project Coordinator of FADAMA in Anambra, Mr. Chucks Egbueh, who stated this today in Awka said 4,000 of the farmers were into rice production while 1,253 others were into cassava production.

Poultry farming: Ondo Govt, Agric institute to train 18,000 youths

In Ondo State, the government says it is partnering with the Federal College of Agriculture, Akure (FECA) to train 18,000 youths in poultry farming to facilitate job creation for the youths through agriculture.

Agribusiness: FG to train 3m women, youths this year

Retaining the sub-national focus, we hear that the Federal Government has concluded plans to train three million rural youths and women across the country in Agribusiness, this year.

Director, Extension Services of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Mrs. Karima Babangida who stated this, Tuesday said the government would achieve this through its Livelihood Improvement Family Enterprise (LIFE) Programme which also aims at equipping beneficiaries with capacity enhancing skills.

Yobe Govt. distributes fishing equipment to farmers

In Yobe State, the Government has distributed canoes and fishing materials worth N24.6 million to 74 fishing households in 10 Local Government Areas to boost fishing and create jobs in the state. At the distribution exercise in Gashua, Governor Ibrahim Gaidam noted that the equipment would create employment, encourage wealth creation and economic empowerment for the beneficiaries.

Nigeria’s Agric sector witnessing steady growth-Buhari

We can only draw attention to the need to ensure that such interventions by governments, donor agencies and development partners must be properly structured to maximize visible impact on the people. There are too many reports of handouts in all directions and one hopes that Nigerians are truly benefiting.

That sums up AgroNigeria for last week.

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Do have a wonderful week ahead!


Content Courtesy: Agro Nigeria