World Food Day: FAO, Oyo Ministry of Agric, Celebrates National-wide, Calls for Youth Involvement in Agriculture - LivestockTrend


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Friday 16 October 2020

World Food Day: FAO, Oyo Ministry of Agric, Celebrates National-wide, Calls for Youth Involvement in Agriculture

Just like World Egg Day, the world food day is a day set aside by the United Nations Organization (UNO) through one of its agencies, Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) on 16th October of every year to celebrate and advance the course of food security globally especially in times of crisis.


According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the celebration is to create awareness for

people who do not have enough resources to provide for food and as a result, leading to hunger and serious starvation. It also serves as an avenue for implementing agricultural policies by government across the globe towards ensuring that food is available for people.


Also, The Oyo state government has assured the people of the State that there would be food sustenance and abundance of farm produce due to sufficient rainfall this year and preparedness of the government to feed the masses.


Wole Shokunbi, is the immediate past chairman, Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Ogun state council, in his word, said, the major concern of FAO, a specialized agency of UNO, is primarily to lead international efforts to defeat hunger. It is designed by UNO to achieve food security for people to have regular access to high-quality food for healthy living.


He furthered

"But, how far have these countries of the world actualize this goal when countries like Kenya, Philippine, Pakistan and other third world countries find it difficult to cater for the need of their citizens due to the skyrocketing of foods thereby throwing a large number of children into hunger."


Shokumbi said the reports from the UN indicate that over 800 million people globally still do not have enough food to eat while so many people are suffering from malnutrition because of poor feeding. As a result of these global challenges, the international community through FAO in conjunction with various governments and international stakeholders and Non –Governmental Organizations. (NGO) are working round the clock towards finding a lasting political will, strong enough to break the cycle of poverty, by promoting the new global development goal on hunger.


"In Nigeria, Governments at all levels have designed so many programmes in the agricultural sector to alleviate the suffering of the masses by ensuring food security in the country. The country had witnessed Operation Feed the Nation (OFN) during the regime of Chief Olusegun Obasanjo between 1976 to 1979 as the military head of State which recorded a strong impact in ensuring food security in the country."



Honorable Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Honourable Ojemuyiwa Jacob Ojekunle, in his words, disclosed that to combat hunger, poverty, malnutrition and degradation of natural resources, due measures are already in place to ensure the smooth massive production of food in Oyo state.



The commissioner stated that due to the unexpected covid-19 pandemic that affected the country and the world at large, necessary measures are being taken by the state government to improve the farmer’s capacity to produce more efficiently, make provisions for farmers on what to plant and produce which includes cassava, maize, rice, also pesticides to suppress the activities of pests so as to improve livelihood, enhance food and nutrition, and also security.



In his words, he said that in helping the youths, educating and insightful programmes are already put in place to create jobs by making agriculture appealing to the youths as many young people now see a future for themselves in Agriculture.


He reiterated that we are in the “youth government era” and youths are the future of food security and so to that a call has been made to the youths to come out in great numbers and engage in agricultural activities.


He stated further that acres of land has already been allotted for agricultural activities in places like Ilero, Igbeti, Ogbomoso among other selected areas.


He said the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) is on research on how crops will grow in abundance, livestock production, and basically on how to be transformed in the Agriculture sectors. Sooner or later, youths will have much work to do as regard agriculture, he remarked.


He gave words of assurance to the people not to panic about the invaders dealing with their produce as necessary precautions are already put in place to legally bring them to book, while also that names would be taken down and time measures promising that anchor borrowers program will soon take effect for farmers to access loans for agricultural purposes.


Furthermore, he explained the fact that agriculture has also been extended to the younger ones in grammar school. He said it is so because many young ones’ hurdles in trying to earn a livelihood, they lack productive resources necessary for agriculture, and most importantly, some see agriculture associated with rural economies and as such it is been shunned and ridiculed.


He then stated that it is not meant to be, as the younger ones have a role and place in Agriculture and so now is the time to engage them in agricultural activities, strengthen higher education in agriculture, put agriculture on the school curricular which virtually most schools are doing now, empower them to speak up, link social media to agriculture, improve agriculture image and enforce the greater use of information and communication technologies (ICT), so that, contributions will also be made by them to aid food security, improve income generation, economic diversification and growth.



Honorable Ojemuyiwa then encouraged the people not to give up on Agriculture because it is the future for economic profitability, environmental health, and social equity. He said agriculture will also be great in the future because new kinds of agricultural machines are now starting to arise and youths are also part of the movement and are greatly involved. He also used the medium to remind the people of the tomorrow “World Food Day” in which he enjoined all to fully participate.

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