For the present administration of President Muhammadu Buhari led Federal Government to achieve its target in diversifying the economy through agriculture, there is a need to standardise price control due to the threat that local market pose to entrepreneurs in the sector.
Acting Vice Chancellor, Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, Professor Anthony Elujoba gave this advice while speaking at 2017 Annual In-House Review Exercise of the Institute of Agricultural Research and Training Moor Plantation, Ibadan held on Tuesday.
The yearly review is done in order to appraise the institute’s challenges, achievements and prospects.
Elujoba who was represented by the Provost, Post Graduate College OAU, Professor David Alebiowu stated that farmers are taking a lot of risks in marketing their products due to unstable prices informed that stabilization of the market system will help to boost agriculture in Nigeria.
“Government must also standardise price control because local market volatility is the biggest threat to entrepreneurs in agriculture. The farmers are taking a lot of risks in marketing their products due to unstable prices.
“Stabilization of the market system till boost agriculture in Nigeria”.
Elujoba further stated that “Ladies and gentlemen, the greatest challenge is how to reposition agriculture as the sector still has the potentials to transform the economy. In order to overcome the challenges and improve agricultural productivity, improves implements and tools must be deployed to agricultural production, modern irrigation techniques, soil, crop and animal improvement programme must be energised.
“The system must also ensure better storage, processing and transportation methods
He maintained that “Mono-economy needs to give way to the production development of various sectors of the economy. The agricultural sector if well developed will enhance provision of food and raw materials, jobs creation, reduce poverty for the Nigerian teeming population”.
He then charged research institutes to develop technologies that are demand -driven and adapt Information and Communication Technology tools for effective dissemination of information.
“My dear colleagues, ladies and gentlemen, in the face of the present challenges, it is expected that research institutes develop technologies that are demand-driven and adapt information and communication technologies (ICT) tools to effectively disseminate information for efficient decision making process by our farmers.
Executive Director of IAR&T Professor James Adediran said that no fewer than 4,000 farmers have benefited from the institute’s training programs during the period under review.
He said that the motive of the training for the farmers, intending farmers, members of Non-Governmental Organisations, women and unemployed youths was to reduce poverty, reduce unemployment and create jobs.
“During the year under review, some achievements apart from areas of research have been recorded in areas of infrastructure and human resources developments.
“Over 4,000 farmers, intending farmers, non-governmental organization, women and unemployed youths benefited from training programmes conducted by the institute. The objective was to carry out training that will lead to poverty reduction, job and wealth creation. The farmers in turn were mandated and empowered to train other farmers in their various locations.
In the area of staff development, Adediran said ” This year, few of our scientists and technical staff could attend both international and local conferences where they presented their research findings. However, over 150 staff were promoted, with emergence of three additional professors in the institute.
He advocated that “Research institutes, extension agents, input suppliers and farmers must work together in order to achieve the set-goals for agricultural development in the country. Research institutes must continue to embark on demand driven and market oriented projects that will solve problems of farmers and industries.
He recommended that “The state governments must therefore revive the Agricultural Development Programmes which serve as bridge between the research institutes and the local farmers”.