Oyo governor–elect, Makinde unveils plan on agric - Mega Icon Magazine
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Oyo governor–elect, Makinde unveils plan on agric

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Oyo state governor-elect, Engr. Oluseyi Makinde on Monday pledged to give agricultural development priority attention when he is sworn-in on the 29th May, 2019.

The governor-elect gave this assurance at the opening of a two-day workshop on Human Resource Development of Rural Farmers through Innovative Information Technology held at the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Ibadan.

The two-day workshop organized by Dr. Lilian Otaye-Ebede and Dr. Olatunde Durowoju on behalf of Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU) forms part of the remit of the Global Challenge Research Fund (GCRF) to tackle the challenges faced by developing countries. It was attended by various stakeholders including farmers, farm owners, extension agents, academics, members of research institutions, advocacy groups and other relevant stakeholders who converged at IITA, Ibadan to discuss the challenges affecting the effective and efficient dissemination of information on innovative technologies to farmers, especially rural farmers.

One of the key themes that emerged from deliberations in the workshop was a need to urgently assess extension services through public and/or private partnerships in order to ameliorate the lack of funds and capacity that have plagued that sector of the value chain.

Another important theme that emerged was the need to have pressure groups/lobbyists from different stakeholder committees that will advocate for investment in agricultural support services both from public and private establishments. More importantly, the stakeholders felt the context of the farmers should be considered when designing and disseminating new technologies. Therefore, farmers should be engaged from the idea generation phase all through to the prototype testing phase.

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Engr Makinde,  who declared the workshop open, said he was surprised at the level of poverty of people in the rural areas of Oyo State during his campaign before his election. He wondered what had happened to the extension systems of transferring improved technologies to farmers in rural areas of the State. He promised to pay serious attention to the plight of rural farmers “because without food security no country can claim to be totally independent,” he said.

Presenting a paper on the occasion, the governor-elect  noted that agricultural information generation and dissemination were necessary for the development of agriculture.

He lauded the sponsors – Liverpool John Moores University for developing such an initiative and for working in collaboration with IITA and Practical Action Consulting in delivering this important project.

The PDP chieftain added that it would be the priority of the next administration under his leadership in the state to proffer solutions to the challenges of poor farmers in the rural areas.

“The obvious manpower and infrastructural needs of the  Extension Services Department of our Ministry of Agriculture shall be addressed with utmost urgency, poor rural roads, power and water  supply are issues that shall be addressed equally and  simultaneously if we want free flow of information dissemination in rural agriculture,” he emphasized.

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Makinde concluded that there must be a regular forum for the town and the gown to meet under his administration to bring the benefits of agricultural research institutes, universities and all other agro-allied institutions in Oyo State to bear on the farmers to help solve the problems of food insecurity. 

In his own address, the Director for West Africa at IITA, Dr Robert Asiedu pledged the commitment of IITA to work with the state and Liverpool John Moores University to help improve agriculture and the livelihoods of farmers in the state in particular, and Nigeria in general.

He explained that as an institution, IITA had set for itself the goal of taking “11 million people out of poverty and reclaiming 7.5 million hectares of degraded land,” and that to achieve that goal required partnership with state and non-state actors.

 

 

By Idowu Ayodele

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Oyo: Adekanmbi visits, commiserates with family of slain APC leader

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The immediate past Commissioner for Finance and Budget in Oyo state, Mr. Bimbo Adekanmbi has visited the family of the late leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state, Alhaji Babatunde Oreitan, who was killed by unknown Assassins.

The revered political leader, Alhaji Oreitan was murdered on Wednesday at his Oremeji residence in Ona Ara Local Government Area of the state.

Adekanmbi who joined thousands of sympathisers in the state to commiserate with the family of the deceased described late Oreitan as a committed leader who put in his best for the smooth running of democracy in the state, adding that he led his people with absolute dedication to the highest good.

” Our leader, Baba wa, Baba Ore, only God knows all. We are shocked and saddened. May Allah grant you rest, Amen. You will be greatly missed by all”, the ex -commissioner submitted

Consoling the grieving family Adekanmbi said: “I received with sadness, news of the death of Baba. He was a kind gentle old man. He was courteous to all who met him. He was kind to friends and strangers alike, and he gave of himself generously to those who went to him for leadership tutor, his political leadership was never about personal ambition for its own sake.

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“He was a man of the people, who served for the people and now, has left a legacy which the rest of us must emulate and surpass.

“My heart goes out to Baba wives, children, his extended family, political associate and to his friends, I pray that God will give them the grace to bear this loss, and grant Al-Janah Fridaos to our Baba”, he added.

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Reps call for more funding for NTA, FRCN

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The House of Representatives through its Committee on Information, National Orientation, Ethics and Value has canvassed for more funding for the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) and Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN).

The lawmakers also lamented the dearth of facilities and transmitting equipments at the regional headquarter of the Federal Government owned stations located in Ibadan, the Oyo state capital.

The Chairman of the committee, Hon Segun Dokun Odebunmi who led other members to the federal government owned stations which include NTA, FRCN and Amuludun FM maintained that there is need for proper funding of these stations for effective operation.

While expressing his displeasure, Odebunmi noted that there was nothing on ground to show that these stations are ready for the digital switch over which is the current trend in the broadcasting industry in the world.

“ At FRCN, the building has been in place since 1961, no serious renovation on it, the same with NTA, old structures with obsolete equipments. We need to do something urgently to rescue the situation  and I want to use this medium to appeal to President Muhammadu Buhari and the Minister of Information and Culture, Mr. Lai Mohammed to please release funds to these stations.

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“ We don’t have to wait for the election period before we release funds to these stations to function, they should  be effective in the discharge of their roles of informing, enlightening and educating the general public at all time

”With the zeal and determination of the workers, I believe if they have the necessary equipments and other facilities in place they will operate effectively”, he said.

He, however assured that the Committee will influence more funds from the 2020 budget for FRCN and NTA as well as secure equipments from the available ones at the headquarters .

Odebunmi added,“ your role in  informing, educating and enlightening the public  about the development in the society cannot be underrated and the only way you can do this effectively is  when you work under conducive atmosphere with good facilities and just like I promised, wee will look into that and do something as soon as possible .

In his remarks, the NTA Zonal Director, Engr. Omolola Olorode who conducted the Committee round the station said lack of sufficient funding was  the major challenge facing the organization.

Also, the Director of Finance and Account,  Mr Michael Oluwole who represented the  Director General FRCN Ibadan, Alhaji Muhammadu Bello lauded the  Committee for their visit, urging  them to assist the corporation on increase funding and provision of basic facilities.

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‘Implement actions to reinstate elected council chairmen’ , IGP tells Oyo CP

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The Inspector General of Police, Mr Mohammed Abubakar Adamu, has directed the Commissioner of Police in Oyo state, Mr. Shina Olukolu, to initiate appropriate actions that will reinstate the sacked elected local government council chairmen by Governor Seyi Makinde.

According to a letter dated January 23, 2020 and addressed to the Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), in Oyo state, Chief Akin Oke, the IGP asked him to liaise with the Commissioner of Police to facilitate the implementation of the legal opinion of the Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF), Mr. Abubakar Malami SAN.

It would be recalled that the AGF had earlier sent an official memo to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) led Oyo state government to demand the dissolution of the local government caretaker committees and the reinstatement of the democratically elected council chairmen that were illegally sacked within hours of Governor Makinde resuming office.

The IG’s letter titled “Re: Unconstitutionality of Dissolution of Elected Local Government Councils And Appointment Of Caretaker Committees: The Urgent Need For Compliance With Extant Judicial Decisions” has directed the Commissioner of Police to take actions and implement the legal opinion of the AGF.

The letter signed by the Principal Staff Officer to the Inspector-General of Police ,DCP Idowu Owohunwa,  was in response to a petition by the Oyo APC Chairman.

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“Your letter dated 23, January, 2020 on the above underlined subject, refers. I am to inform you that the Inspector-General of Police has directed the Commissioner of Police, Oyo State to initiate appropriate actions in line with the legal opinion of the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice on the matter. You may accordingly, liaise with him to facilitate”, the letter reads.

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