National coordinator of Agricultural Trade Development Forum, ATDF, Mrs. Rosemary Layode has tasked Edo state government to invest holistically in agriculture and empower the farmers in the state in mechanized and large scale farming in view of the vast arable land that abound all across the state.
Layode noted that farmers in the state could export plantain and other produces in commercial quantities to other states and West African countries where they are needed, adding that it was of necessity for farmers, agriculture businessmen and women and cooperative societies like the workers and farmers of the Multipurpose Cooperative Society of College of Education, Igueben to come together and access the immense opportunities in agric sector like relevant information and soft loans that will boost their agricultural trade.
Speaking at the hall of the College in the presence of Registrar, Mr Michael Osayame Ekhovbiye and other officials of the institution with the theme, “ Farming With A Purpose”, she said, “Travelling across your wonderful state, Edo State is thrilling and mind blowing for me as I saw plantations and produce growing on its own, there is so much fertile land and opportunities to create wealth by farming with a purpose.
“I want to urge the government of Edo State who are doing so much already but there remains more to be done to empower farmers and as a matter of fact, create a robust agric policy that will tackle inaccessibility to seedlings, farm equipment and finance. In few years the State can begin to export not just plantain which is readily in abundance here but other produces that gives the state a comparative advantage.
“Castor can bring economic development to the state and nation at large. Other foreign vegetables can be produced in Edo state due to its cold environment. I am here to support what has been done as regards empowerment of farmers and agric businessmen and women in relevant information and capacity building”.
Layode called for government and investors to partner with the farmers in Edo state as Edo stated a gold mine filled with natural resources. More training on agric businesses should be invested in.
Mr. Shuaib Mubarak, a farmer and agriculture expert also tasked the participants of the Agric seminar on having firsthand information on the crops they intend to plant He noted that since castor seedling grows well in the area, they could be develop capacity to plant castor seedlings in commercial quantities as it was in high demand in the global community.
Obviously elated at the huge success of the seminar, Mr Kasimu Mohammed, Edo/Delta/South East Coordinator of ATDF noted that they will avail every opportunity to share knowledge and boost farming opportunities in the state.
Earlier, the registrar of the college of education, Mr Patrick who received the Agric experts in his office stated that the school was in reed of a group like ATDF to empower its staff members in opportunities that avail them in Agriculture.
President of Cooperative Society of COLED, Mr John Usifor thanked the Agric facilitators and stated they will ensure the knowledge shared to their members will be put to use. A Memorandum of Understanding will be signed betw