March 8, 2024

State Government, Stakeholders Validate Agric Extension Service Bill

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Some agricultural stakeholders on Wednesday validated the Draft Agricultural Extension Service Delivery Revitalisation Bill to strengthen the extension service system in the country.

The stakeholders made their inputs at a one-day Technical and Consultation Workshop in Abuja.

The participants at the workshop include State Commissioners for Agriculture, Permanent Secretaries in State Ministries of Agriculture and some key heads of government agencies.

In her remarks, Hajia Salamatu Garba, the Executive Director, Women Farmers Advancement Network (WOFAN) described the development of the bill as a pillar to economic growth and livelihood improvement in Nigeria.

She said that the purpose of the workshop was to bring relevant stakeholders together to look at agricultural policy and translate it into bill.

“A lot of research works have been done but they have not been translated into action. So, we need all these inputs from various stakeholders to make a successful bill.

“We have reached a stage where we look indepth at the agricultural policy and we have translated it into a bill which we are hoping to pass the bill to the National Assembly”,  WOFAN boss said.

According to her, the reason for involving stakeholders is for them to claim ownership of the bill.

“That is why state Commissioners for Agriculture, technical committee on agriculture are here and their suggestions are needed.”

Also speaking, Commissioner for Agriculture, Kebbi state, Hon. Maigari Dakingari said that the country was having shortage of food due to the type of extension services delivery it provided.

“We need to allow private extension services to contribute to the agricultural sector and boost food sufficiency. ” he said.

The commissioner pledged the state government’s to domesticate the bill and speed up its passage.

Also, the Commissioner for Agriculture, in Bauchi State, Prof. Simon Yalams, advocated capacity building and inclusiveness to promote the agriculture sector.

Mr Johnson Ebokpo, Commissioner for Agriculture and Irrigation Development, Cross River, said that the problem of agriculture in Nigeria was extension service delivery.

“In the UK, extension service has legislative backing, while in Nigeria, there is no clear legal framework around the extension service delivery.

“There is need for us to validate this bill. So, for us at Cross Rivers, we have developed a robust programme to bridge the gaps for extension services, we are here to support the bill. ” he said.