The Federal Government Food Security programme received a boost when the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMet), presented raingauges and measuring cylinders to the British American Tobacco Nigeria Foundation (BATNF).
The presentation is in fulfilment of the agreement signed earlier in the year to provide technical support, weather information as well as training for BATNF Field officers as this will help BATNF fulfill its objective to provide support for smallholder farmers in Nigeria.
In a statement signed by NiMet spokesperson, Ushie Tessy, while speaking during the formal presentation of the rainguages at the Leaf Head Office, BAT Iseyin Agronomy Limited, Iseyin, Oyo state, the Director General/CEO NiMet, Prof. Sani Abubakar Mashi, who was represented by the General Manager/ Head of Weather Forecasting Services Department, Mr Ibrahim Ishiyaku, said the event is not just a demonstration of the agency’s support for the Federal Government Food Security Programme but also a practical commitment to the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed with BATNF.
He disclosed that NiMet is not only presenting the raingauges and measuring cylinders but will also train field officers of the BATNF on the use of the weather instruments for climate monitoring.
Prof. Mashi said the event will translate to better forecasts for farmers and guarantee improved yields.
He admonished BATNF to ensure that the equipment are well manned and to commit to transmission of the data to NiMet for improved weather forecasting services.
Earlier, the Executive Director, BATNF, Abimbola Okoya noted that the Foundation has a long history of collaboration with NiMet which was officially sealed with the signing of MoU in February this year.
She revealed that the event marks a significant milestone in gathering data on rainfall at the selected communities where BATNF support rural smallholder farmers in Oyo state.
Abimbola also disclosed that NiMet, through the partnership, has supported the Foundation to train farmers and Extension agents in Niger, Benue, Kaduna, and Gombe states this farming season.