43RD NATIONAL COUNCIL ON AGRICULTURE AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT HOLDS IN UMUAHIA
Stakeholders in the nation’s agriculture sector have been urged to embrace policies aimed at enhancing food sufficiency and wealth creation.
Minister of Agriculture, Chief Audu Ogbeh, made the call in a message to the 43rd National Council on Agriculture and Rural Development in Umuahia Abia State.
Chief Ogbeh said the Federal Government was committed to repositioning agriculture through sustained investment in research, food storage, processing, among other crucial areas of agriculture.
The Minister represented by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Dr. Mohammed Umar, explained that Federal Government had engaged more personnel as agricultural extension officers to upgrade the capacity of rural farmers for greater productivity.
Declaring the event open, Governor Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia State called for the diversification of the country’s economy with emphasis on agriculture as a key driver.
The Governor, represented by his Deputy, Mr. Ude Oko Chukwu, described the theme – “consolidating the Strategies of Agricultural Production Policy for Economic Diversification and Growth” – as appropriate and expressed the hope that the conference would proffer solutions to the nation’s economic challenges.
Minister of Water and Mineral Resources, represented by Mrs. Christie Otua, said plans were being intensified to revamp moribund irrigation projects as well as fund new ones to increase access of farmers to water.
In a remark, the Vice Chairman Senate Committee on Agriculture, Chief Theodore Orji, stressed the need to address the lingering herdsmen-farmers clashes claiming thousands of lives in country.
Some of the participants, interviewed by Radio Nigeria, described the council meeting as challenging and strategic in efforts to position agriculture as a major revenue earner.