Sabo Nanono, Agriculture Minister and the state commissioners of agriculture have been called upon to develop a policy framework that enforces establishment of agro processing clusters for different groups of farmers in every local government in the country.
Pastor Adeola Elliott, an agribusiness expert made the call in a statement made available to DAILY INDEPENDENT, titled; ‘Agriculture to the rescue of nation-wide insecurity – Minister of Agriculture to act fast’. He stated that the various clusters will process specific agro-produce and that the agriculture at the primary level has helped to improve food security in the country, stressing that this can be attested to by the successful closure of the borders. “Now we must address agro-processing.
This is the scientific inclusion, under agriculture valuechain, that will give good income to these children of farmers who are handy for ongoing vile recruitment for crimes commission across the nation.
Elliott stated that universities of Agriculture, Departments of Agriculture in other Universities and Polytechnics, Agencies of the Federal and State Governments involved in agriculture activities and international organizations driving agriculture relevance, must be involved in the clusters to provide equipment and training support for packaging, logistics, distribution and other relevant value chain activities.
“It is sacrosanct that some quantity will be sold as raw food items, while a good chunk that is susceptible to waste as we speak, will be processed for sales also. “The human resource for this initiative must be children of the farmers around the clusters. It can accommodate all gamut of education obtained by their children.
He noted that if the country has started initiative like this in the days of farm settlement programme, Nigeria would probably not have found itself in this crisis. “We can move those in the insurgency areas to safe states to be part of the scheme and return to start their own in the States when the place is safe. “I pray our people in position of authority will critically look at this idea and improve on it, to solve the insecurity crisis that has engulfed our nation.
The solution is not only military or jail sentence/capital punishment. It is multi-dimensional, such as this. “It is instructive to affirm that 80 per cent of our agricultural produce is from small farm holders scattered across our nation. “Also, 80 per cent of Nigerian children are from these peasants, who are majorly small farm holders. “These children are usually the huge crops of idle hands recruited by the insurgents in the Northern part of Nigeria and also, recruited by kidnapping rings and other vices in the Southern part of Nigeria,” he added.