Saturday 16th October 2021

Category: Agriculture

Let’s improve agricultural production to achieve food security – Oyetola’s wife

… empowers more women farmers

The wife of the Governor of the State of Osun, Mrs Kafayat Oyetola, has called for more food production in the state to ensure food security for residents.

Mrs Oyetola said the current food situation in the country has made it necessary for farmers to improve agricultural production on every front.

She also lauded the administration of Governor Adegboyega Oyetola for its devotion of intensive efforts to improving agricultural production on all fronts in the State since the inception of the administration.

The Osun First Lady, speaking at the presentation ceremony of the second phase of IleriOluwa Development Initiative (IOD) Women in Agriculture Scheme in Osogbo, on Tuesday, described the agricultural sector as the main pillar for the sustenance of humanity, adding that there is no time better to embrace farming than now.

She added that the current price of foodstuffs in markets across the country demand large production of foods for the citizens.

“I am happy we can reach out again to our women who engage in Agriculture with the vital and necessary supports that they need. The ceremony today is the second phase of the IleriOluwa Development Initiative Agricultural Program scheme.

“The Program was designed to assist low-income female farmers periodically with necessary inputs that will enhance their productivity in the farms, increase their yields and ensure food security for their families.

“Our intervention here today is to serve as catalyst for select women who are in great needs in their farming activities. The first phase comprised of assistance with vegetable seeds, training on effective handling of the seeds and a revolving loans program for farm preparation. This second phase has expanded envelope of inputs which include vegetables, cassava stems, cashew plants, cocoa, chicks and poultry feeds.

“Also, the training module has been retained. So, we have brought some experts here who will speak to us on relevant latest methodology at handling some of the inputs to be given out today. I urge our beneficiaries to continue to take optimum advantage of this intervention”, Mrs Oyetola said.

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Osun unveils Food Support Scheme to feed 30, 000 persons monthly

…. Urges youths interested in farming to show interest. Council approves appointment of Elegbedi

The Osun Executive Council, under the leadership of Governor Adegboyega Oyetola, on Monday, gave its nod to the start-off of the State’s Food Support Scheme, christened Osun Food Support Scheme.

This was part of the decisions reached at the end of the State Executive Council meeting held on Monday.

Speaking with journalists at the end of the meeting late Monday night, the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Ismail Omipidan, noted that the scheme, which runs from March this year till November next year, will be targeting 30, 000 poor and the vulnerable citizens across the State in the first instance.

He said for effective administration, the scheme will target persons with special needs and disabilities in all LGAs; the poor and the vulnerable in churches will be reached through the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN; the needy and the poor in the Muslim community will be reached through Osun Muslim Community; the vulnerable among artisans through their associations; the needy among other ethnic groups in the State through their leaderships; the traditional worshipers through their association and traders through Iyalojas and Babalojas.

The Chief Press Secretary also further revealed that in line with Governor Oyetola’s policy of promoting small, micro and medium businesses in the State to boost local economy, all food items will be sourced locally, adding that the programme will commence this March.

In a related development, and in fulfilment of the promise made by the Governor to effectively and productively engage the youth in Agriculture, the State Executive Council has also approved the allocation of farm lands to youths genuinely interested in Agriculture.

“Recall that while Mr. Governor was presenting this year’s budget before the House of Assembly last year, he revealed that about N1.5 billion was set aside to engage our youths in Agriculture, Culture and Tourism, Mining and Commerce. It is in fulfilment of that promise that the State, in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, will be clearing 10, 000 acres of land. Of this number, 1000 have been successfully cleared.

“It will interest you to know that in the last 10 years, this is the first time the State will be having access to such cleared farm lands. We have broken a jinx of over 10 years by clearing 1000 acres of farm lands. We intend to allocate large chunk of it to our youths who are genuinely interested in farming. We shall be embarking on enlightenment campaigns soon to get interested ones enlisted,” Omipidan added.

The State Executive Council has also approved the appointment of Prince Azeez Muideen Olaniyi as Elegbedi of Egbedi in Egbedore Council of the State.

His appointment followed the demise of Oba Isiaka Ayanboye Jinadu in May last year.

The Kingmakers had met in August last year to elect Prince Olaniyi as the Oba-elect out of the five candidates that showed interest in the throne.

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FG lauds Oyetola’s commitment to rejuvenating agriculture

…. expresses readiness to commence all-year-round farming in Osun

The Federal Government has commended the administration of Governor Adegboyega Oyetola of Osun for the huge investment made to revive the agriculture sector in the State.

The Federal Government also acknowledged the State government for keying into many of its policies aimed at revamping, resuscitating and rejuvenating the agriculture sector for greater and maximum productivity.

This is even as the Federal Government expressed readiness to commence all-year-round farming in Osun as part of efforts to ensure food security and avert the possible effect of food scarcity in the dry season.

The Executive Secretary/CEO, National Agricultural Land Development Authority ( NALDA), Prince Paul Ikonne stated these on Tuesday during his on-the-spot assessment of irrigation sites and other farm settlements in Osun.

Ikonne had visited the State to assess and access the expanse of lands suitable for all-year-round farming as the nation was approaching dry season.

It will be recalled that the President Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government in November this year reinstated NALDA which had been moribund, and flagged off National Young Farmers Scheme, as part of his administration’s commitment to reviving the agriculture sector and making it the bedrock of the nation’s economy.

Addressing journalists during his tour of some of the farm settlements in the State, Ikonne said the team came to Osun on the directive of President Muhammadu Buhari to aggregate suitable lands for all-year-round farming and work out modalities to retrieve all the already- acquired lands under the agency.

He said Osun was chosen as one of the piloting States, having attested to the government’s commitment to revamping the sector.

The NADAL Executive Secretary who extolled the commitment of Governor Oyetola towards the actualisation of the national economic diversification, expressed satisfaction at the available suitable lands provided by the State government to drive and actualise the initiative.

He disclosed that the all-year-round farming process would commence in Osun by the first week of January, 2021 as necessary facilities had been provided by the President to actualise the dream.

“We are here on the spot-assessment of the land donated to National Agricultural Land Development Authority (NALDA) for dry season farming. We want to see whether the available lands are suitable for farming especially dry season farming.

“With what we have seen so far, we can see that Osun has hidden treasures to revamp and redefine the agriculture sector. We have seen the possibility of all-year-round farming here and we are ready to partner the State to reposition agriculture.

“As a matter of fact, when there is all-year-round farming, that means there is all-year-round empowerment and wealth creation, and this is what we are bringing to Osun.

“If you can recall, President Muhammadu Buhari recently flagged off the National Young Farmers Scheme, aimed to engage and attract young Nigerians into productive farming, and this visit is in compliance with the objective of the initiative.

“Going by the places we have visited in Osun, you will agree with me that youths in this State will be making huge money because, with this Scheme, there is no more idleness, no more poverty and hunger.

“There will be full supply of necessary farm equipment, inputs and technical support which include capacity training, capacity building and human capital development.

“So, I am extremely excited that Osun is keying into the lofty initiative of President Muhammadu Buhari to resuscitate the agriculture for the betterment of the citizens, because with the natural resources that Osun is endowed with, there are better days ahead for the citizens, particularly the youth.

“Osun stands to gain a lot from this partnership as unemployment, poverty, hunger and idleness which had been the source of youths restiveness would be eradicated. The State will also benefit greatly from the Scheme in its onerous efforts to empower her citizens and expand its food production capacity.

“I am excited by the commitment of Governor Adegboyega Oyetola to turn around the fortune of agriculture and make the sector the mainstream and bedrock of the State’s socioeconomic development. I am equally glad that he is following the footsteps of Mr. President to revive agriculture sector”, Ikonne added.

In his remarks, the Commissioner for Agriculture and Food Security, Mr. Dayo Adewole, said the Administration of Governor Oyetola would do everything possible to ‘walk the talk’ and bring the initiative to fruition.

Adewole who urged the citizens, particularly the youth to key into the State’s laudable policies on agriculture by showing interest in farming, assured of government’s readiness to provide necessary support capable of repositioning the sector for mass employment opportunities and food productions. 

The State Coordinator, National Agricultural Land Development Authority (NALDA), Alhaji Kazeem Yusuf, expressed gratitude to President Muhammadu Buhari for reinstating NALDA, just as he assured the State’s readiness to advance the cause of the Scheme.

He disclosed that the State had provided over 1, 000 hectares of land to achieve the set objectives of the programme.

The delegation visited Owala Dan in Olorunda and Egbedore Local Government Areas; Otagere farm settlement in Ede-South Local Government Area, and Oodua farm settlement respectively. Others on the assessment tour are the Coordinating Director, Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security, Mrs. Adegbemisola Fayoyin; Osun Director, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Mr. Atoyebi Sunday, among others.

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Osun empowers cocoa growers, gives out N5m loan to 30 farmers

….As beneficiaries shower encomiums on Governor Oyetola

No fewer than 30 cocoa farmers on Wednesday benefited from the loan facilities provided by the  Government of the State of Osun as part of fulfillment of its campaign promises to support farmers and promote agriculture in the State.

The loan, according to the government, was aimed at boosting cocoa production and increase the farmers’ yields for this year’s growing and harvesting season.

Addressing journalists shortly after the distribution of the soft loan in Osogbo, the General Manager, Osun Micro-Credit Agency, Mr. Dayo Babaranti, said similar gesture had recently been extended to cassava and tomatoes farmers in the State. 

He said the agency was determined to support the economy of the State as it is ready to revive micro, small and medium scale enterprises.

“We are here this morning to distribute N5millon loan to 30 individual cocoa farmers in the four major cocoa growing councils in the State, namely Ilesa-West, Ilesa-East, Atakunmosa-West and Atakumosa-East respectively.

“This support is given to farmers for them to purchase chemicals and other things they need to spray and prevent cocoa from infections that usually to reduce their productions ahead of this year’s growing season. 

“So, with this little support, our farmers can have access to some of the farm inputs to support their activities and increase their  production,” he said.

Babaranti admonished the beneficiaries not to see the fund as free money but a support to advance their productions.

He further implored the beneficiaries to use the fund judiciously and apply it on what it was meant for.

“I urge the beneficiaries not to divert the funds but apply it on what it was meant for which is to support their farming activities,” he said.

Some of the beneficiaries who addressed the media after they received their cheques, lauded the state government for promoting agriculture sector in the state.

The Chairman, Agbewumi Cocoa Group, Mr. Ajibade Moshood, commended the commitment of the state government to revamp agriculture. Moshood, who assured of the timely repayment of the loan, said, “We shall use the fund for the purpose it was meant for.”

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FG lauds Osun govt for reviving agriculture, donates two tons of hybrid cashew seeds

…..as over 200 farmers benefit

The Federal Government on Tuesday applauded the administration of Governor Adegboyega Oyetola of the State of Osun for revamping the agriculture sector in the State.

This is just as the FG acknowledged the support of the State government towards farmers in Osun, describing it as remarkable.

The Minister of Agriculture, Alhaji Sabo Nanono, gave the commendation while delivering and handing over two tons of hybrid cashew seeds donated to the State government, in Iwo.

Nanono who was represented by the Director of Agriculture, Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Engr. Sunday Atoyebi, said the donation of the farm inputs was informed by the assessment and evaluation of the performance of farmers, particularly the cashew growers in the State.

He applauded the State government for keying into the policies of the Federal Government, led by President Muhammadu Buhari which are aimed at revamping, reviving and resuscitating the agricultural sector in the country.

Nanono, who described agriculture as the bedrock of socioeconomic development of the nation, said it was worthy of note that Osun Government had demonstrated a high sense of commitment to rejuvenating the sector and making it the basis of socioeconomic development.

While presenting the cashew seeds to the State Government, the Agric Minister said the gesture would go a long way to turn around cashew production in the State and by extension give more credence to the status of Nigeria in the comity of cashew producers in the world.

He said “There is no doubt that Osun is one of the few states in Nigeria where cashew is grown impressively well just as the cashew growers in the state are competing favourably with their counterparts in the world. Hence, the reason the State was considered as one of the benefitting states by the Federal  Ministry of Agriculture. 

“Also, we arrived at this support in line with the statistics gathered that placed the cashew farmers in Osun high and to us, this move would further help to turn around the cashew production and improve the ranking of Nigeria as the 6th largest producer of cashew in the world.

“As you can see, we are not just giving the farmers cashew seeds, but rather, hybrid seeds as this will improve their yield for maximum profit. So, I’ll advise the beneficiaries to apply the seeds as prescribed and follow the normal agronomics practices and guidelines, with this, the success is theirs”, he added.

Commending the Governor, the Minister said “I give kudos to our Governor, Mr Isiaka Adegboyega Oyetola for all the laudable things that he has been doing, especially in the agric sector, as reflected in the various supports that the state had given to farmers to boost their productions and make the State the food basket of the region. 

In his response, the State Commissioner for Agriculture and Food Security, Mr Adedayo Adewole, commended President Muhammadu Buhari for being supportive of the State in its efforts to raise the bar of agriculture in the State.

“With this support to cashew farmers from the federal government, no fewer than 200 farmers would benefit from the gesture.

Adewole also expressed gratitude to Governor Adegboyega Oyetola for the hands of fellowship extended to all farmers in the State. The gesture, he noted had helped to reposition agriculture to certain level of improvement in the last 18 months of the administration.

The Commissioner who also commended the farmers in the State, particularly the cashew growers, said it was a thing of joy for the state to receive hybrid cashew seeds worth two tons from the federal government as support.

He urged farmers in the State to continue to put in their best and support government in its efforts to turn the State to the food basket of the Southwest region.

Earlier, the Chairman, Cashew Growers Association of Nigeria, Alhaji Safiriyu Olasupo Aremu and Chairman, Catfish and Allied Fish Farmers Association of Nigeria, Osun chapter, Mr. Afolabi Ademola Titus, expressed profound gratitude to President Muhammadu Buhari and Governor Adegboyega Oyetola for their timely and prompt support.

They promised to use all the inputs received judiciously and productively.

 ..fish farmers receive 500 bags of lime

In a separate event, Adewole visited and delivered 500 bags of lime to members of the State Chapter of Catfish and Allied Fish Farmers Association of Nigeria. 

He urged farmers in the State to remain united and continue to form cooperatives among themselves, saying the move would help them  earn more support from the State government.

“As you all know, agriculture is one of the biggest agenda of our Governor and the government has been doing all within its limited resources to reposition the sector for the betterment of the citizens.

“We have been mandated to do everything possible to revamp the agriculture sector by making it more productive, benefitting and rewarding.  That is why we have been up and doing to ensure the actualisation of the mandate. “As you can see, we have given 500 bags of limes to fish farmers while others have equally received various supports on different aspects of agriculture to boost their productions”, he said.

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