The Management of Lagos State Polytechnic yesterday, through the on Wednesday 19th February, 2020 hosted farmers in Ikorodu to a specialFarners Improvement Welfare (FIW), organised by the Department of Agriculture Science of the institution.
The workshop, which featured over 200 farmers and hundreds of the institution's students from the Agricultural Science department was x-rayed the numerous challenges confronting farmers in Nigeria and how such problems could be solved, with a view to enhancing productivity among practitioners.
Addressing participants at the event, LASPOTECH Rector, Mr Samuel Sogunro stated that, ‘the farmers improvement workshop is a continuation of our Community Social Responsibility in Agricultural Development of the State and Nigeria’.
‘It is a known fact that, many interventions have been introduced to improve agricultural productivity and welfare of farmers in Nigeria and there have not been remarkable improvement in Farmer’s output and standard of living. One major reason is poor access to production and marketing related knowledge. This edition of Farmer’s Improvement Workshop (FIW) will bridge this gap in the livelihood of Farmers’.
‘This forum is therefore an avenue for agricultural stakeholders to access the challenges in their respective areas and come up with panacea that would help uplift agricultural practices and value chain in Lagos State’, he added.
To show that the Polytechnic is not just paying lip-service to Agriculture, the Rector also announced, to the chagrin of participants that, the Academic Board of the Polytechnic had approved that all students in the institution must undertake and pass a General Agricultural Studies course, before graduation, effective from 2019/2020.
Mr Sogunro equally commended the efforts of the federal and State governments, towards agricultural development in Nigeria, especially in the areas of policy formulation and execution of meaningful policies, aimed at ensuring that the agricultural sector of Nigeria economy thrives through government strategic framework, committed to the attainment of sustainable national food and security.
Earlier, in her goodwill message at the event, Special Adviser on Agriculture in Lagos State, Ms Bisola Olusanya noted that, ‘Farmer’s welfare is at the core of the policy of this administration in the State. Intensification of better agricultural production system is one of the ways of improving the welfare of farmers, this can be achieved, if farmers take advantage of improved crop variety and other modern technologies in their productive activities’, she said.
The Lagos State Government, through the Ministry of Agriculture is set to ensure the welfare of Farmers in the State, by enhancing their productivity, reducing cost of production, marketing their produce for maximum profit, ensuring higher returns to farmers, giving financial aid for advanced irrigation facilities, providing insurance protection, compensation for losses by natural calamities and linkages with new technologies and research, through its various programmes and projects’, she added.
In her brief remarks, a representative of the Bank of Agriculture (BOA), Mrs Tokunbo Afolabi commended the Management of LASPOTECH for organizing the workshop. She also charged participants to feel free to approach the BOA for loans and other financial support in order to enhance the productivity in their farm businesses.
The Workshop later broke into various. syndicate groups and knowledge sharing sessions, where participants networked and exchange ideas for improved productivity in their various agricultural businesses.