…… People Have Right To Daily Food Says Delta State Commissioner for Agriculture, Dr. Godfrey Enita.

….. ENVIRUMEDIC/SWOFON Commends The Ministry For Their Efforts Towards Attaining Food Security.

…….As Farmers, Agricultural Stakeholders, Speak On Wayforward To Achieve Food Security, Agricultural Growth & Development.

By Victor Bieni, Asaba

As part of efforts to celebrate the World Food Day in Delta State, Environmental and Rural Mediation Centre (ENVIRUMEDIC), a Non-governmental Organization with support from ACTIONAID Nigeria in collaboration with State Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources for Food Security in Delta State, and Nigeria in general, Commended Governor Ifeanyi Okowa led administration, while describing their programs and Projects of Delta State Ministry of Agriculture And Natural Resources as laudable and enjoined Small Scale Women Farmers Organization in Nigeria (SWOFON) and other Agriculture stakeholders to key into Government Programs.

ENVIRUMEDIC led by its CEO, Monday Oghenerouna Itoghor made this remark through his representative, the Program Officer for ENVIRUMEDIC, Alex Okekporo during the World Food Day as Celebrated by Delta State Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources in Partnership with Environmental And Rural Mediation Centre (ENVIRUMEDIC) on the 18th of October, 2022, the event held at the Cenotaph, Asaba, Delta State capital as Delta State Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources stated that people have right to daily food.

ENVIRUMEDIC, a Non-governmental Organization based in Delta State is working on the thematic areas Food and Agriculture, Environment, Economic Development, Community Development, Good Governance, domestication of global Goals SDGs 1, 2, 3( No Poverty, Zero Hunger, Good Health) and with Support from ACTIONAID Nigeria to domesticate Malabo Declaration of 2014 to allocate 10% of total budget to Agriculture towards boosting Agricultural growth and development in the state and achievement of United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, agenda 2030.

You could recall that ENVIRUMEDIC with support from ACTIONAID Nigeria has been working with small scaleholder Women farmers under the umbrella of SWOFON to boost food security in Delta State and Nigeria in general through the Scaling Up Public Investment in Agriculture project of ActionAid Nigeria. ENVIRUMEDIC has supported SWOFON and other Agriculture Critical Stakeholders in the areas of training, capacity building, sensitization, advocacy, technical and financial supports in order to boost food security in Delta State State. SWOFON while thanking Delta State Government, Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources for organizing the event, called on the Ministry to create a special budget line for smallholder women farmers and give more support to Women farmers in the State as group Commended ENVIRUMEDIC for their constant support to Women farmers.

In recognition of the good works of ENVIRUMEDIC, Delta State Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources, farmers and other critical Agricultural stakeholders have been commending the good works of ENVIRUMEDIC in Delta State and Nigeria in general. To this end collaboration is the key according to Dr Godfrey Enita, Delta State Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources. At the Delta World Food Day Celebration event, Small Scale Women Farmers Organization of Nigeria (SWOFON) led by its Delta State Secretary, Mrs Tombra Kasikoro had thanked ENVIRUMEDIC leadership on their support to Women farmers in Delta State, Nigera in general. Other Agric Critical Stakeholders spoke admonished their colleagues, commended Delta State Government for organizing the event and chatted Wayforward to food Security in Delta State.

Speaking in that occasion, Delta State Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources, Dr. Godfrey Enita, who in his welcome address as presented on Delta World Food Day Celebration in Asaba to tackle global hunger under this year’s 2022 theme: “leave no one behind”, has said though that originally World Food Day Celebration is on 16th of every October but Delta chooses 18th to enable all farmers attend the event. He stated that, Delta State Government is committed to ensuring that the right of Deltans on daily need is maintained accordingly. He noted that, “access to quality and essential food is a basic need of people around the world for a healthy society. People must have right to daily food”.

The Commissioner while commiserating with Farmers who were victims of flood, then recounted several achievements of the Ministry in Life Niger Delta program, Fadama Program for result, veterinary services, Agricultural Mechanization, Fisheries, Rice Program, Oil Palm Development Program. He added that, World economic chaos had led to inflation and rise in cost of food hunger, malnutrition and others. The Commissioner noted that, farmers in Delta are being sensitized by the Ministry on the need for effective food supply, to eat quality food and diets. He stated that the Ministry now had better Strategies for food value chain development, which he said is under the current Delta State Agricultural Policy (2021-2026). According to him, the State is also working to boost production in Cassava Development Program with favoured arable crops, land in the State that Delta has commenced exportation of garri to United Kingdom. Also that 3,665 farmers had been empowered. In aquaculture, that over 10,000 Youths had been engaged.

Alex Okekporo of ENVIRUMEDIC told our reporter while fielding questions from some group of Journalists during the event that what informed the NGO’s decision to celebrate with Delta State Government, collaborate with Delta State Ministry of Agriculture And Natural Resources is because the Ministry has fantastic Programs and Projects that smallholder farmers can key into. He added that the collaboration will further strengthen the relationship between ENVIRUMEDIC and the Ministry.

ENVIRUMEDIC leadership who responded that food Security in Delta, Nigeria will be attained, harped on the NGO’s plans for the flood victims, farmers whose crops, Agricultural produce were destroyed by the ravaging effects of flood menace in Delta State as a natural disaster, Alex Okekporo while urging farmers not to be discouraged stated that the NGO is gathering evidence, collecting data to that effect and will do something to support them or ameliorate their sufferings, losses at the appropriate time. He admonished Delta State Government to Continue their Good works even as he enjoined Deltans and other critical stakeholders to work with Smallholder Women farmers to attain food Security in Delta State.

In a separate interview with some of the farmers at the event by our reporter, Engr. Dr. Ozumber Isaac, Director, National Centre For Farm Mechanization, NCFAM, Obi Ezekiel Obi, Coordinator, Farm Settlement, Utagba Unor, officers of Animal Care Services Consult Ltd, The General Manager Gabycord Fish Farms, Project Manager, NORSWORTHY Farms, Akwukwuigbo, Otobo Onyi Philips, Isioma Boika, HOD, Agric, Oshimili South had commended Delta State Government, Delta State Ministry of Agriculture And Natural Resources who are the organizers in collaboration with ENVIRUMEDIC NGO.

The Agriculture Stakeholders had urges their colleagues not to give up despite the flood menace that has ravaged their crops. The Stakeholders also commended the Commissioner for the plans the Governments has for farmers who are flood victims, the achievements of the Ministry and future prospects of the Ministry towards supporting farmers to boost food security in Delta State. The stakeholders urged Delta State Government to make Agriculture sector a priority towards achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, agenda 2030 on food Security.

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