Okwe Obi, Abuja
Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Sabo Nanono, has identified the collapsed of agricultural extension services as a factor hampering food sufficiency, as most farmers still adopt archaic method of cultivating crops.
Nanono, who spoke at a workshop on the revitalisation of agricultural extension services, yesterday, in Abuja, suggested that the employment of responsible extension workers, who would educate rural farmers on how to adopt modern means, issues of poor yield, fake seeds supply and unhygienic preservation methods, would be addressed.
Represented by the Director, Federal Department of Agricultural Extension, Satumari Kudla, he said: “The revitalisation of agriculture extension services comes as a veritable means to boost our efforts.
“I wish to set the agenda for the revitalisation for the nation’s extension system by putting these issues to robust discussion which is redefining the roles and responsibilities of the three tiers of government in agriculture extension services and establishment of evaluation strategies, and possible reprisal for actors that failed in their responsibilities to ensure accountability and commitment,” the minister said.
The minister recommended that incentives that will foster, encourage, mobilise farmers around cluster farming should be put in place, adding that innovation that will encourage aggressive training and necessary manpower and ensuring professionalism in agricultural extension service delivery, should be prioritised.
“Professionalism in extension service also needs a review and putting in place appropriate curricula in all institution of learning and ensuring regular and continuous training of extension workers,” he said.