The Nigeria Export Promotion Council (NEPC) has reiterated its commitment to ensure continued collaboration with stakeholder’s/key payers to improve on the performance of the non-oil export sector of the nation’s economy.
Mrs Amina Abdulmalik , Kogi State Coordinator of NEPC stated this in Lokoja on Tuesday at the opening of a workshop on cassava rapid multiplication for farmers and processors.
Abdulmalik said the Cassava Rapid Multiplication (CRM) intervention in Kogi State, was a follow-up to the earlier technical support workshop organised for growers (Farmers), and processors of Cassava in 2022.
According to her, the
programme is one among the series of quality projects undertaken by the NEPC to educate farmers and processors about new technology in the Agric sector and National development.
“Especially in the area of food sufficiency, generation of foreign exchange earnings and its ever increasing role in providing employment opportunities for the unemployed persons in the country,” She said
She said that it was in the realisation of this that government through its various development programmes has been encouraging farmers to engage in food crop production.
Abdulmalik further explained that one of the programmes introduced by the government to alleviate poverty is to technically support agriculture in various ways, hence the need for the workshop
The state Coordinator said that the NEPC Lokoja after series of surveys decided to intervene/support farmers through cassava rapid multiplication programme.
Nigeria , she disclosed is currently one of the largest producers of cassava in the world with annual output of over 34 million tones tuberous roots but farmers and processors are still battling with inability to export quality standard required for the market success.
She said the objective of the multiplication and distribution of the improved Cassava Rapid Multiplication (CRM) stems is to establish an improved cassava multiplication system.
Abdulmalik said it also aimed at developing effective and sustainable improved varieties to farmers to boost cassava production in Nigeria.
She called on the stakeholder’s/key players in the cassava production sector present to pay attention to the practical session and make good use of lessons learnt for the benefit of humanity.
The Coordinator also urged them to abstain from wrong practices to improve business efficiency and good agricultural practices to propagate the consumption of Nigerian Cassava finished products.
The workshop featured paper presentation by Dr Yakubu Zubairu of Federal University of Technology Minna.
In their separate goodwill messages, the Permanent Secretary in the Kogi State Ministry of Trade and Commerce, Mr Salifu Mohammed, the Director -General, Kogi State Enterprises Development Agency (KEDA) , Hajia Rekiya Sanni , Mrs Ifeoma Nweke from NYSC and a representative of Women In Agriculture all commended NEPC for organising the workshop.
They urged farmers to take advantage of the workshop to improve on their farming practices and help the government to share their knowledge with other farmers in their community.
Mrs Nweke who came woth a number of NYSC corps members to the workshop said youths are the future of farming in Nigeria.
She also explained that agriculture can be used to create wealth and generate employment for the nation’s teeming youths if made attractive.
Highlight of the workshop is the free distribution of improved cassava stems to farmers present at the workshop.