Home News Don blames failure of agricultural policy on lack of continuity

Don blames failure of agricultural policy on lack of continuity

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Abuja  –  Ernest Aiyedun, Professor of Agricultural Economics, says the country experiences perennial failure of agricultural policies due to lack of continuity from one regime to another.
Aiyedun said this at the 17th Inaugural Lecture of the University of Abuja on Thursday.
The don added that lack of policy direction on agriculture had produced untold consequences on Nigerian farmers.
Aiyedun, who was the Speaker at the occasion, said the country’s policies on agriculture had remained unworkable with disastrous consequences on the country’s economy.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), reports that the topic of the 17th inaugural lecture is: Agriculture and the Nigerian Economy: Matters Arising.
He said the topic became necessary considering the quest by the Federal Government to diversify the country’s economy in view of the dwindling oil revenue.
Aiyedun said there was no political system that could maintain an underfeed people all over the world, adding that despite this, more than half of the world’s population still go to bed hungry.
According to him, garbage bins are the menu table for millions of people in Africa, because of shortage of food and this is why it behooves on the government to invest in agriculture.
Aiyedun decried a situation where subsistence farmers were the main producers of most of the food being consumed in the country.
He said that such situation would not augur well for the country’s economy.
Aiyedun stressed that the country must change its policy direction to that of food production in order to fast track economic growth.
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He called on the federal government to utilise federal universities of agriculture and some of the universities with faculties of agriculture to boost food production in the country.
The don said universities had a role to play in national agriculture research policy of the government; hence the government must make use of them to aid food production.
Aiyedun challenged the government to embark on rice production, adding that any Nigerian President that could fix rice production would have written his name in gold.
“I believe that any Nigerian that can fix rice production in Nigeria and take her from major exporter to importer will do the country a whole lot of good because rice remained commodity widely consumed.
“Any regime that pursues it would have succeeded in changing the country’s fortune.”
Vice Chancellor of the university, Prof. Michael Adikwu and the Chairman of the occasion, lauded the academic prowess of the speaker.
He said that such topic was timely to change the fortune of the country, in view of the policy direction of President Muhammadu Buhari to give agriculture a priority.
The VC said he remained resolute in his determination to build a university that would take pride in vibrancy and impact positively on the society. (NAN)

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