The Country Director, SAA/SG 2000, Professor Sani Miko, has identified Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria as the secret behind the success being recorded in the agricultural sector through the development of technologies.
Professor Miko made this known at SAA/SG 2000 this year’s Stakeholders National Annual Review and Planning Workshop, which took place at ABU in Zaria.
He said the agricultural institutes under ABU are assisting the SASSAKAWA to achieve its objectives.
He added; “it is true that the agric complex of ABU, comprising NAERLS and Institute for Agricultural Research (IAR), is unique, because we source our technology from there.
Most of the technologies we bring are not developed by SG 2000. Our role is to look for good technologies, test them and promote them within the communities.
“So, IAR has helped us greatly in achieving our mandate. We are very happy to associate ourselves with the institute.
NAELRS is a partner, because it has the mandate for extension; we have been working closely together. ABU is the first university to embrace our programme in Nigeria.”
In his address, the minister for Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh, represented by Hajiya Karima Babangida, Director, Federal Department of Extension, said agriculture is the only sector that would accommodate all Nigerians with or without academic qualification.
Ogbeh said his ministry is determined to ensure that agriculture sustains economic growth by providing jobs, creating wealth and boosting the lives of Nigerians, especially women and youths.
He said when those goals are achieved; social tension like insecurity arising from poverty and unemployment would be substantially curtailed.
Ogbeh charged participants at the workshop to critically review the activities of SAA/SG 2000 and come out with a robust plan that would be effectively implemented to enhance the food and nutrition security of Nigerians.
The Vice Chancellor of ABU, Professor Ibrahim Garba, lauded the Federal Government’s policy of food import reduction. He observed that a significant percentage of food that is consumed in Nigeria is produced by smallholder farmers, hence the need to empower and support these farmers.