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Thursday, September 28, 2023

Food Security: Nasarawa Women Farmers Wants Support In Agricultural Inputs

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Nath Gbaoron, Lafia.

Women farmers in Nasarawa State have appealed to the state government to support farmers with agricultural inputs to ensure food security in the state.

Speaking at the Agricultural show organised by the Young Men’s Christian Association ( YMCA) Mada Hills held in Lafia, Leader of Ogbonge Women Farmers in the state, Mrs Patricia Onoja urged the government to provide farm inputs to farmers especially women to encourage food production across the state.

Onoja also charged the state government to establish gender desks in the state Ministries, Department and Agencies (MDAs) to address the challenges faced by women.

“The notion that women do not contribute to agricultural development is changing because women are doing a lot to take care of their families through farming even though most of them do not have ownership to land.

“Women are facing a lot of challenges especially the issue of high cost of farm equipment. We do not have collateral to collect loans from the bank to buy farm inputs and equipment.

”We are therefore appealing to government to involve women as critical stakeholders before the formulation of policies that affect women,” Onoja said.

She further urged the government to provide more extension services to farmers to enable them get the right information to improve farming activities in the state.

Also speaking, Mrs Felicia Micah, Chairperson, Association of Small Scale Agro Producers in Nigeria (ASSAPIN ) in Nasarawa Eggon Local Government Chapter, called on the government to provide farmers with fertiliser to improve crop yields.

“We are always running to the businessmen to get fertiliser at high cost to produce food for the nation. Government should provide fertilisers for us at subsidized rate. They should create a link to farmers to get farm inputs for farmers,” he said.

In a keynote address, Guest speaker at the event, Dr Alkali Maku called on women to advocate for agricultural policies through lobbying, protests, rallies, matches, media campaigns, research project, petitions, open letters, strategic events, Community awareness, raising and activism training.

Maku said the agricultural show was aimed at to strengthening women advocacy in key area of agricultural production to drive home some key policy issues affecting them.

He said it would create awareness in some agriculture practices that can improve the lives of women in local communities across the state.

In a goodwill message, Director Climate Change at the State Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, Mr Angbashim Ishaku, said the ministry was always ready to dish out information on climate related issues to assist farmers to produce more crops to ensure food security.

On her part, President of National Council of Women Society ( NCWS) in Nasarawa State, Mrs Mary Meshi said the society was committed to developing the women through various women empowerment programmes to enable them become self reliant.

Earlier, the Executive Secretary of YMCA, Mr Ango Adamu said the agricultural show was organised in collaboration with OXFAM through the ” Together Against Poverty” project being implemented in the state.

Adamu explained that the aim was to recognise the role of women contribution to agriculture and to increase their visibility in the state, country and world at large.

He, therefore urged women to participate in agricultural processing, cropping contribute to economic growth of the nation.

Moneycentral gathered that over 250 women farmers from the grassroots, farmers organisations, Non Governmental Organisations ( NGOs) and Government agencies attended exhibition and prizes were won at the end of the event.

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