BY DONATUS NADI, Lafia From 2012 till date, Nasarawa State Government has made deliberate effort towards land acquisition for various development projects which has become a critical issue in the state since 2011 when Governor Umaru Tanko Al-Makura assumed office. For Al-Mmakura to deliver on his mission to provide development in a chaotically unplanned urban centres, many people had to be displaced, and large numbers will also still be displaced in future as various infrastructural  development projects are currently going on. The state government’s commitment to fostering economic growth and developing new governmental institutions has necessitated massive acquisition of land. Acquisition of private land by the government for public purposes became a common practice in the state since 2012, but unlike in other societies, land acquisition did not mean something threatening and frightening to land owners as government paid full compensation and relocated land owners long before it commenced any form of development. Since...
by Nkechi Isaac, Abuja The Department of Science and Technology of the Education Secretariat of the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has reiterated that their research in seed improvement and large scale production of seedlings is a breakthrough for farmers. Director of the department, Mrs Rosemary Umana, said during a media parley at the department headquarters in Utako that the department is into research and development and in collaboration with Biocrops Biotechnology Nigeria Ltd., saying there has been a progressive development of improved seedlings such as yam, sugar cane, plantain, banana and sweet potatoes through the micro (tissue culture) and macro propagation. She noted that collaboration with Biocrops further led to partnership with the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA). “Through the partnership with the IITA, the use of the Aeroponics technology for the production of disease and pest free yam seedlings all year round has been introduced,” she stated. Earlier in his...
By Chika Izuora, Lagos Greenpeace, an environmental group has raised the concern that poor government communication and coordination is hurting West Africa’s ability to combat illegal fishing, losing it billions of dollars each year in the process. The problem has become so severe that it is threatening food security in the region, the environmental group said in a new report. “Fish stocks are not restricted to national boundaries, and that is why the solutions to end the overfishing of West Africa’s water can only come from joint efforts between the countries of the region,” Ahmed Diame, Greenpeace’s Africa Oceans campaigner, said in a statement. Halting illegal fishing is only possible, Diame said if governments pool resources and work together to standardize legislation and establish joint monitoring centres. Both international and regional vessels are guilty of contravening existing regulations, Greenpeace found during a ten-week surveillance voyage from February to May. It documented a number...
By Ruth Tene Natsa, Abuja The Global Panel’s policy brief “Improving nutrition through enhanced food environments” has revealed that food systems are failing to drive improvement in nutrition. This is even as it revealed that two billion people have micronutrient deficiency, 200 million children are stunted or wasted and two billion people are overweight or obese (increasing non-communicable diseases such as Type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease) among others. The report revealed that food environment is influenced by policies across the food system which determines the availability, accessibility, affordability, and desirability of foods to consumers. It also added that changing food systems are reshaping food environments, noting that while the average per capita food supply worldwide increased from 2,200 to 2,800 calories/cap/day (from 1960 to 2009), malnutrition is growing in every country, rich and poor, there is also a spike in ultra-processed food products consumption and agricultural commodities are being processed on a long...
BY DONATUS NADI, Lafia The Nasarawa State House of Assembly yesterday said that it would pass a bill for a law to make provision for the control, prohibit and to restrict grazing of animals in urban centres, schools and other designated areas to curtail crisis between herdsmen, farmers and other people. The speaker of the house, Alhaji Ibrahim Balarabe-Abdullahi, announced this after the sponsor of the bill, Mr. Daniel Ogazi, the house deputy majority leader, presented the bill for second reading during the house proceedings in Lafia. Balarabe-Abdullahi said that the bill would not only tackle herdsmen/farmers clashes and road accidents caused by animals moving freely without being well controlled by the herders. According to him, “The bill would also curtail attitudes of residents who form the habit of rearing animals such as pigs, sheep, goats, cows and other domestic animals, especially along highways as well asherdsmen who graze in urban centres, schools...
LEADERSHIP EDITORS The Cross River Government says it is ready to partner with First Bank Nigeria Plc to enhance agricultural production in the state. Prof. Anthony Eneji, Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources, stated this on Monday in Calabar while receiving a team of First Bank which paid him a courtesy visit in his office in Calabar. Eneji thanked the bank for showing interest in improving agriculture in the state and promised that the government would use the opportunity offered by the bank to improve services in the sector. He said that the stat government had successfully carried out various value chain projects in rice, oil palm, Cassava, cocoa, and yam production. ‘‘But we will love to improve on the quantity of production in order to feed our local factories, companies and also meet the international market standards and demands,’’he said. According to him, the state government has allocated land for the growing of cotton,...
LAEDERSHIP EDITORS Participants at the International Conference on Scientific Research say there is an urgent need for the country to curtail food wastage by improving food storage and preservation. They said this in their resolutions at the end of a three-day conference held at the Ajayi Crowther University in Oyo . The conference, which had delegates drawn from the faculty of natural sciences of various tertiary institutions, has “Sustainable Development and Innovation’’ as its theme. In the communiqué, delegates noted that up to 50 per cent of agricultural harvest in the country was usually lost as a result of inadequate food processing, packaging and distribution procedures. “Corporate organisations and wealthy individuals should invest heavily in the nation’s agricultural sector. “We also call on the government at all levels to ensure that sizeable allocation of resources is committed to food and agriculture,’’ they said. On the health sector, the delegates called for the installation appropriate and functional...
BY ANKELI EMMANUEL, President Muhammadu Buhari has remained consistent in implementing programmes that could attract Nigerian youths to the agricultural sector, minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Audu Ogbeh, has said. The minister who spoke at the opening of a one-day stakeholders’ sensitisation workshop on Climate Change Adaptation and Agri-business  Support organised in collaboration with the Sokoto Office of the  International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), urged  Nigerians to take advantage of the numerous opportunities in the agricultural sector. Ogbeh said the ministry, in collaboration with IFAD and other partners, has developed and implemented the climate change adaptationand agri-business support programme (CSAP) to fast-tract climate change mitigation and stimulate smart agriculture in the country. He noted that Buhari’s target for the sector is to ensure that Nigerians take full advantage of the agribusiness opportunities, adding that he wants to see Nigerian youths practice and benefit from agriculture value chain. The minister, who was represented by...
By Ruth Tene Natsa, Abuja The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh has said food prices have remained high because the nation’s currency value fell by almost 80 per cent in two years. The minister who spoke in an exclusive interview with LEADERSHIP over the Weekend said “our currency fell in value, since we arrived, the naira dropped almost 80 per cent in value, so what do you do? “The farmer is buying diesel to run the tractor, the price of diesel went from N160 a litre to N300, and it’s just coming down now. The farmer buys pumps, the prices of pumps went up by 65 per cent, the farmer buys chemicals to spray his crops, and he buys seeds” Ogbeh stated. He however posited that the price of rice had dropped from N19,000 a bag to N17, 000 now and it is still falling. He added that government...
BY ANDY ASEMOTA, Katsina Niger Republic has urged Nigeria to allow for more easy passage of herdsmen from the Francophone country to graze their animals. The Speaker of Maradi State House of Assembly, Bala Bokwai, gave the charge when he visited his Katsina assembly counterpart, Abubakar Yahaya Kusada, yesterday. Bokwai said his delegation was at the assembly to intimate the Katsina law makers on the efforts being made by the government of Niger Republic towards ensuring peaceful co-existence between citizens of both countries. He, however, commended Katsina State Government for maintaining good relationship and mutual respect with Niger Republic and called for sustenance of such efforts. Receiving the delegation, the Speaker of Katsina State House of Assembly, Abubakar Yahaya Kusada, emphasized the need for effective bi-lateral ties between Nigeria and Niger Republic to ensure lasting solution to farmers, herdsmen conflicts. Kusada noted that it was only through mutual engagement between the two governments that persistent...