USING AGRICULTURE TO FIGHT INSECURITY AND FOOD SCARCITY
By Esther Asoanya, Anambra State.
Anambra State Government has reiterated its resolve to partner with Farmers Support Initiative (FSI) in promoting Agriculture for economic growth and food security in the State. The Commissioner for Agriculture Mr Chinwuba Onukwuba made this known in Awka during a one-day seminar on the need for Nigerians to go back to Agriculture for economic growth and food security. Mr Onukwuba noted various efforts of Governor Willie Obiano in promoting Agriculture in the state.
He noted that Agriculture is one of the pillars of the State Economy and that they are focusing on integrated Agriculture hence the involvement of the youths in bee keeping and mechanized agriculture. He commended the FSI for their vision and mission, saying that Anambra State Government Is in support of what they are doing towards revamping Agriculture for food security and economic growth and promised to partner with them.
Addressing the participants, the Director, Farmers Support Initiative UK; MR Ikenna Offor said the programme is aimed at using farming to address issues of socio economic and security challenges facing Africa as well as to educate relevant stakeholders on the need to key into the ideology of developing the farming sector for general good.
He encouraged Africans, especially Nigerians to move to the next level of socio-economic development which is embedded in agriculture, adding that farming sector hold key to unlocking the potentials of most Nation States in this Continents.
On the decay and neglect of agriculture in Nigeria, especially in Igboland, the Director, Sustainable Demonstration Farm, Mrs. Stella Iwuagwu lamented that Igbos have left their Farming culture in pursuit of Western culture, cutting our trees to build mansion and exposing our environment to erosion.
She encouraged all to go back to farming, no matter how little and make sure they have a small portion of land where they grow vegetables and fruits for their Children to eat. “We have fertile land with lots of sun and water, yet we left the land of our ancestors to rush to the city, all our food come from the North, all we toil is to buy food, let’s go back to our culture to promote farming as a lively hood”. She said.
In the vote of thanks, Chief Chika Okpala (Chief Zebrudaya Alias 4:30) while thanking God for the success of the event enjoined all to join hands in shifting our economy from oil to Agriculture where lots of potentials abound. He also thanked the coordinator of FSI for coming up with the idea of promoting Agriculture in Africa, Nigeria in particular; and enjoined all stakeholders to partner and support FS Initiative for common good.