The Livelihoods Improvement Family Enterprises Programme in the Niger Delta, (LIFE-ND) has said it will collaborate with the state Agricultural Development Programme (ADP) to strengthen extension service delivery to farmers in Edo State.
The National Component Coordinator, Rural Institution Youth and Gender, LIFE-ND, Dr Clement Uwem, made this known during a one-day policy engagement with extension agents on agricultural extension service delivery in Benin last week.
Uwem said the meeting became necessary because extension services are critical to LIFE-ND projects and agricultural development in Nigeria.
“Agriculture is being carried out in an environment where climate change is affecting food production, what that means is that we now have to use climate-smart agricultural technologies.
“And we can only find the ADP to have that reserved knowledge to help the youths who are coming into agriculture.
“So, this engagement with the ADP will be a continuous one in order for them to provide extension services to LIFE-ND project in its four prioritised value chains of rice, cassava, fisheries and poultry production.
“LIFE-ND project would be engaging both public and private extension agencies to drive output of crops and livestock within the rural areas and add to the gross domestic product of the state.”
Uwem noted that LIFE-ND project was an initiative of the Federal Government funded by the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
He noted that the scheme was designed to boost income generation and food security in the Niger Delta using an incubation model.
“Under the incubation model, we identify successful business persons in agriculture in the community and attach youths to train under them.
“After two production circles, they are being given the opportunity to practice on their own,” he added.
Also speaking, the Edo coordinator of LIFE-ND, Mr Jude Ekpu, welcomed participants to the meeting.
Ekpu said the project will collaborate with ADP to provide extension services to incubators and incubatees in the state.