All Farmers Association of Nigeria, AFAN, has appealed to the President -elect, Gen. Muhammedu Buhari to drive Nigeria economy on agriculture as a means of augmenting the prevailing dwindling fortune from the oil sector.
A member of the technical committee of the association nationwide, Dr. Tunde Arosanyin who stated this in Lokoja, Kogi state capital over the weekend during a working visit to the Kogi State said agriculture remained the most vibrant option for the country whose fortune have been going down as a result of the monolithic oil driven economy.
He said the President -elect will have to imbibe this principle by given adequate budgetary requirement to the agricultural sector as well as making the sector attractive to the farmers in a more enterprising way.
“President -Elect, General Muhammedu Buhari must ensure that the agricultural sector get the basic budgetary requirement. We must respect the 2003 Maputo declaration which earmarked 3 percent of African country’s annual budget to agriculture since we are signatory to it.
“The incoming administration most also make the sector attractive to the farmers. Farming must not only be a source of feeding but most be taken as serious business that stands to generate income for the country”, he expressed.
He argued further that there are many ECOWAS initiatives and programs that the country can follow, like fishery and timbers, adding that these sectors are presently in high demands in the international market.
Arosayin noted that no country can be successful on a monolithic economy, saying, Nigeria must look into other sector to rejuvenate the economy and tackle the high rate of unemployment; “if not we (Nigeria) will continue to suffer in the conundrum of this socio-economic menace”.
Arosayin also urged the President -elect to look at the pitfall that characterised the Agricultural Transformation initiative of the outgoing administration of President Goodluck Jonathan.
“The Agricultural Transformation Agenda, ATA, of President Jonathan was good at policy level but poor in its implementation. There were laudable initiative in the ATA, especially the cassava bread initiative, dry rice plantation and the Crop Processing zone initiated across the country.’’