President Buhari Urges More Nigerians To Embrace Farming


President Muhammadu Buhari has urged more Nigerians to embrace farming, saying he was surprised to hear that only 2.5 per cent of arable lands in the country is being cultivated.

The President said this while addressing journalists at his residence on Tuesday in Daura, the Katsina State capital, after the Eid-el-Kabir prayers.

According to him, the Presidential Economic Advisory Council had notified him that only a small percentage of the land in the country had been used for farming, directing security outfits to work more with communities to create a more friendly environment for farmers.

The President mandated security outfits to be more relentless in maintaining peace in the country, and ensure a more harmonious relationship with communities so that they can glean intelligence.

He said the security situation had improved considerably overtime in the North East and South-South, and efforts were being made in North Central and North West, assuring that more will be done to fish out those that had been troubling the peace of the nation and citizens.

Earlier at the prayer ground, the Emir of Daura, Faruk Umar Faruk, called on citizens to be more supportive of the President so that he can actualize his vision of improving security and boosting the economy.

“Since the President came into power we have seen some positive changes in the country,” the Emir said.

“May God continue to strengthen the President with good health and courage to bring peace to the country. God will not allow Nigeria to see shame,’’ he said. “God has been keeping the country and he will keep the country.’’

President Buhari Calls For More Youth Inclusion In Agriculture, Says It Will Boost Economy, Earnings


President Muhammadu Buhari has urged agencies involved in agriculture to further streamline their priorities to include more youths in driving modern methods of farming.

He also gave an assurance that an enabling environment will be created for full participation for all those interested.

The President made the call on Tuesday in Abuja at the launch of the National Young Farmers Scheme, designed by the National Agricultural Land Development Authority (NALDA) to spur more youth interest in farming, the President said agriculture remains the backbone of the Nigerian economy, being the largest contributor to the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

“We will do more to expand, modernize and revolutionize our agriculture, which is our most important asset,” he was quoted to have said in a statement signed by media aid, Femi Adesina.

“I have directed that all NALDA’s abandoned farm estates be retrieved to enable thousands of our young men and women to be engaged in farming. This Administration will be achieving agricultural mechanization through this scheme and I am confident that Nigeria under my watch, we will achieve food security in producing most of what we eat. In good harvest years we may even export our surpluses and earn foreign exchange.”

President Buhari also noted that the resuscitation of NALDA will make Nigeria food sufficient and in a few years, the country will begin to earn more revenue from exports of agricultural commodities.

“By virtue of my passion and desire for agriculture and also as a farmer myself, I am directly supervising NALDA as an authority under the Presidency.

“I am asking the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and State Governments to give full cooperation to NALDA in its activities. With the success of Anchor Borrowers programme spearheaded by the Central Bank of Nigeria and new programmes to revive cotton, palm products and cocoa, the next few years will see a vast difference in our agricultural performance.”

The President said all the necessary approvals that NALDA requires for effective take-off, beginning with areas of adequate land preparation for crop farming and livestock rearing, had been given, charging the Executive Secretary/CEO of NALDA and his team to continue to live up to expectations and increase their activities in local communities.

“I am told that, so far, 4,333 families have benefited from this scheme and it is expected that many more individuals and families will benefit as the programme is rolled out.

“I now flag off the National Young Farmers’ Scheme. It is my expectation that the Scheme will take in young Nigerians, graduates and non-graduates alike, and be part of this Government’s effort to reduce unemployment and contribute to the regeneration of agriculture and our economy.”

The Senate President, Ahmed Lawan, who was present at the event, commended the President for what he described as his steadfastness in repositioning the agricultural sector since coming to office.

He further noted that there was a need to encourage agricultural agencies, like NALDA, to work closely with the research institutions in Nigerian universities.

On his part, the Executive Secretary/CEO of NALDA, Mr Paul Ikonne, said the discovery of oil in the country hampered the growth of agriculture and increased poverty in rural communities, assuring the President that the concerted effort to revive interest in farming will tackle poverty and create wealth.

Ikonne said the resuscitation of NALDA after close to 20 years of abandonment will go a long way in reducing unemployment in the country, especially among the youth.

“Our focus is to engage 1,000 farmers from each of the 774 Local Government Areas, thereby creating 774,000, direct employment annually,” he added.

Goodwill messages were given by a representative of the Young Farmers, Fatima Usman Musa and Denmark Ambassador to Nigeria, Amb. Jesper Kamp.

Governors of Abia State, Okezie Ikpeazu; Kebbi State, Abubakar Atiku Bagudu and Yobe State, Mai Mala Buni; also participated in the event.

FG To Sustain Use Of Technology For Increased Farm Yields


President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday pledged that the Federal Government will sustain the deployment of Geographic Information Services (GIS) and other similar technologies to help farmers achieve increased production.

The President made this known when he received a delegation of the Surveyors Council of Nigeria (SURCON) led by the President of the International Federation of Surveyors, Professor Rudolf Staiger.

This was disclosed in a statement signed on Thursday by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu.

President Buhari receiving a presentation from President of International Federation of Surveyors Professor Rudolf Staiger alongside Leader of Delegation Surveyor Femi Kasim as he receives President of International Federation of Surveyors in State House on 27th Feb 2020.


President Buhari said his administration will continue to work with members of the survey and geo-informatics profession to provide the quality infrastructure that will bring prosperity to Nigerians.

‘‘Our Government, in the past five years, has embarked on critical infrastructure development and rehabilitation projects across the country. We are designing and building roads, bridges, rail tracks, airports and affordable housing all over the country.

‘‘Our goal is simple, we will develop quality infrastructure that will bring prosperity to millions of Nigerians in both our urban and rural areas.

‘‘To achieve this, we are working with surveyors, engineers and town planners. I am, therefore, confident that the 344 new surveyors inducted into the register of the Surveyors Council of Nigeria will be very busy in the coming years,’’ he said.

In his remarks, Professor Staiger told the President he was in the country to witness the induction of 344 new surveyors into the register of SURCON, and the investiture of the maiden edition of the Distinguished Senator Ahmed Ibrahim Lawan Award for the Development of Survey and Geoinformatics in Nigeria.

‘‘For me, it is a great opportunity to personally interact with President Buhari whose international reputation of honesty, integrity and selfless services stand him out as one of the greatest sons of Africa,’’ he said.

The President of the International Federation of Surveyors added that the association was proud to be associated with the Nigerian leader and his administration’s determination to revive Nigeria.

Food Import: Those Who Went Into Farming Have No Regrets – Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari speaks at a meeting with members of the CNNI in Abuja on February 21, 2020.



President Muhammadu Buhari has called for more investment in the agricultural sector of the country.

Receiving members of the Council for New Nigeria Initiative (CNNI) in Abuja on Friday, he gave an assurance that his administration would make faster strides through it as a nation.

“Those who went into farming have no regrets, and we now save millions of dollars that would have been expended on food importation,” the President was quoted as saying in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina.

He noted that the country has a vast population and landmass, insisting that agriculture was the way to go.

President Buhari said his administration bumped into it by experience and common sense when they came into power in 2015.

“We encouraged people to go back to the land and God has been kind to us, giving us three to four good rainy seasons in succession,” he said.

The President added, “We are almost self-sufficient in food production and that was why I told the Governor of the Central Bank that not even one cent should be given for food importation.

“We have got more people back to the land, employment is being generated, and we will do more of it.”

The President commended members of CNNI led by Senator Abu Ibrahim, which is the successor to the National Committee for Buhari Support Groups, for volunteering to do “an unpopular job.”

On his part, Senator Ibrahim informed the President that CNNI has the vision of a new Nigeria, where the leaders and the led would be united in their commitment to advancing the cause of the nation.

He added that the citizens’ sense of patriotism and pride were utmost, revealing that CNNI has articulated a detailed action plan for 2019-2023

According to the senator, the objectives of the group include serving as a platform for promoting the ideals of nationhood and responsible citizenship, as well as stimulate and re-orientate the citizenry to become active participants in the nation-building process.

CNNI also has a mandate to serve as a vehicle that would alert the government of economic, political and social initiatives which would benefit the citizenry; as well as mobilise support to fight corruption, secure the country, develop infrastructure and bequeath a legacy of positive socio-political change.

‘Farming’ Brought To Fruition A Vision I Carried For So Long – Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje


British-Nigerian actor, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, has shared some of the experiences that inspired his directorial debut, ‘Farming’.

Speaking at a press conference in Lagos, the actor who said he had gone through an identity crisis as a teenager, explained that the movie was an expression of some of those struggles.

According to him, producing the movie “was very surreal, very cathartic, at times very emotional but ultimately it was like the fruition of a vision that (he) had carried for so many years”.

The movie which tells a story of a young Nigerian boy, ‘farmed out’ by his parents to a white British family with hopes of a better future, featured Genevieve Nnaji, Kate Beckinsale, Damson Idris, among others.

Adewale described them as “fantastic” saying, “I couldn’t have got a better cast”.

When asked what Nollywood can do to get international attention, he said the Nigerian film industry has so much potential to be seeking the attention of its foreign counterparts.

“The Nigerian film industry has to have its own identity,” he said.

He further explained that the industry is not lacking with talent and is rapidly expanding in terms of quality of productions.

“A lot of Nollywood was born out of a lack of resources. We were using cameras that were relatively outdated. There’s new technology and artists and filmmakers are now getting access to that and that’s definitely going to improve the quality,” he said.

Beyond that, he believes that the industry does not need to compete with others but rather continue to improve itself and tell its stories in the best ways possible.

“I don’t think you should think of it in terms of improving the quality to compete with Hollywood or anybody else.

“It is improving the quality to be able to tell our stories in the richest texture and the ways that we can and if we stick to that, who knows it may become the dominant channel,” he said.

North Korea Admits Farming Failures Amid Food Shortages

North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un attending the Second Plenum of the 7th Central Committee of the Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK) in Pyongyang. STR / KCNA VIA KNS / AFP


North Korea has acknowledged “drawbacks” in its agricultural sector this year, echoing UN reports of declining crop yields in a country that remains heavily reliant on food imports and aid.

Agricultural production is chronically poor in the North, which has periodically been hit by famine, with hundreds of thousands dying — some estimates say millions — in the mid-1990s.

Premier of the government cabinet, Pak Pong Ju, referred to “drawbacks made by some farms and units in the past” at a national meeting of farming officials that took place in Pyongyang this week, state media said on Thursday.

“He said that they failed to conduct seed production and management in a responsible way and also fell short of doing proper strain distribution,” Pak was quoted as saying by the KCNA news agency in an English-language report.

He “underscored the need to attain the goal of grain production” set out in a five-year development plan that wraps up in 2020.

The North has been less hesitant in highlighting shortcomings and policy failures through its state media since leader Kim Jong Un succeeded his late father Kim Jong Il in 2011.

The young, Swiss-educated leader has occasionally been reported rebuking officials for failing to satisfactorily carry out tasks.

The UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization said this month that the isolated, nuclear-armed state would need to import 641,000 tonnes of food in the coming year. The figure is up from 456,000 tonnes this year when it bought 390,000 tonnes and received 66,000 tonnes in food aid.

There was a widespread lack of access to food in the North, it said.

North Korea was one of 40 countries — 31 of them in Africa — identified by the FAO as in need of external assistance for food.

UN agencies estimate that 10.3 million people in the North need humanitarian assistance.

But donor funding has dried up in the face of political tensions over its weapons programmes, with critics saying the provision of aid encourages Pyongyang to prioritise its military ambitions over adequately providing for its people.

David Beasley, the head of the UN’s World Food Programme, said in May that there was undoubtedly a hunger problem in North Korea but it was not on the scale of the 1990s famine.


EU Says Farming ‘Not Part’ Of US Trade Deal, Contradicting Trump

File: US President Donald Trump meets with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, DC, on July 25, 2018.


The EU insisted on Friday that proposed trade talks between Europe and the United States would not include farming, in contradiction to a claim by President Donald Trump.

“I have been very clear on that… Agriculture is not part of it, only the things that are explicitly mentioned in the statement,” EU Commission spokeswoman Mina Andreeva told reporters in Brussels, in reference to a joint communique after White House talks on Wednesday.

Python Swallows Woman In Indonesia While Farming

12 Killed In Bali Village Landslide In Indonesia


An Indonesian woman has been found in the belly of a giant python after the swollen snake was captured near where she vanished while tending her vegetable garden, police said Saturday.

The body of 54-year-old Wa Tiba was found Friday when villagers cut open the seven-metre (23-foot) python which was found bloated in the village of Persiapan Lawela on the island of Muna, offshore of Sulawesi.

“Residents were suspicious the snake swallowed the victim, so they killed it, then carried it out of the garden,” said local police chief Hamka, who like many Indonesians has only one name.

“The snake’s belly was cut open and the body of the victim was found inside.”

Some 100 residents, including worried relatives, launched a search for the woman after she failed to return from her garden Thursday night.

Hamka said villagers found the giant serpent lying about 30 metres from Tiba’s sandals and machete, adding she was swallowed head first and her body was found intact.

The garden in which she disappeared was at the base of a rocky cliff, pockmarked by caves, and known to be home to snakes, Hamka added.

Giant pythons, which regularly top six metres, are commonly found in Indonesia and the Philippines.

While the serpents have been known to attack small animals, attempts to eat people are rare.

In March last year, a farmer was killed by a python in the village of Salubiro on Sulawesi island.


Akwa Ibom Speaker Urges Youths To Embrace Farming

The Speaker of Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, Onofiok Luke, has advised youths in the state to embrace agricultural.

He gave the advice in Ikot Abasi Local Government Area, Akwa Ibom State when he visited an integrated farm owned by a young entrepreneur, Mr Solomon Solomon, who is a beneficiary of his mentoring initiative.

The speaker who was delighted with the progress so far made by the young farmer said, “With what I’m seeing here today, there is no way one can be hungry. There is no way there would be hunger in the land.”

He expressed satisfaction with the quality of harvest from the farm and the fact that coconut, cassava, pineapple and other crops were being cultivated there.

“With the quality and number of coconut harvested so far from the farm, I am certain that Solomon and other members of the federal constituency who own coconut plantations will soon have a ready buyer that would be willing to order coconut for refining at the refinery which is under construction in the area,” he said.

READ ALSO: Akwa Ibom Govt Begins Construction of Coconut Refinery

He called on the youths of the federal constituency to protect the coconut plantation sited in their domain by the state government.

Mr Luke, who is the leader of the mentoring team, assured the youth of his continuous support for the growth of small and medium enterprises in the state, saying his mentoring initiative was aimed at promoting entrepreneurship.

He said, “My decision to mentor the young ones in entrepreneurship is in line with the Dakkada philosophy of the Governor Udom Emmanuel administration.”

Mr Solomon thanked the Speaker for the initiative and support and briefed him on the successes so far recorded by the farm.

He also presented some harvested produce from the farm to the delight of members of the team.

More Nigeria Women Take Up Farming, Invest In Technology

More women in Nigeria are seeking ways to transform agriculture by making their farms more efficient.

Kofo Durosinmi-Etti is among a new crop of women farmers. She owns and runs Next Generation Innovative Farm in Lagos State and has adopted drip irrigation and greenhouse technologies to grow a variety of vegetables for sale including tomatoes, habanero peppers, okra and kale.

Kofo Durosinmi-Etti is among a new crop of women farmers. She owns and runs Next Generation Innovative Farm in Lagos State and has adopted drip irrigation and greenhouse technologies to grow a variety of vegetables for sale including tomatoes, habanero peppers, okra and kale.

“I think the way we farm is different now, it is not just about manual labour. There are different technologies to make the process easier. For example, we are using a greenhouse technology here, so basically you are able to protect your crops, manage the elements you know, we are watering our plants through drip irrigation so nobody is actually taking a hose to water anything,” said Kofo.

“Everything is made easier you know, and also, to be honest, women have always been a fundamental part of agriculture, you know, that has been a given, but women are now coming to the forefront of it, you know, we are no more just workers you know,

“We are now heading farms, managing farms and really we are bringing that softer choice, look at how pretty my tomatoes are. I mean we make farming look a lot better and now we are just taking our seats on the table essentially,” she added.

Kofo is a trained management accountant who returned home from University in the UK and started her business in 2015.
She also holds a diploma in Agriculture, Water and Crop Management from an institution in Israel.
Women on the continent are the main food providers but a majority don’t have access to technology, which could cut the time it takes for them to grow and harvest crops.

Small-scale women farmers grow up to 80 percent of food consumed in Africa but most of them don’t have equal land rights as men.

Kofo leased land from Lagos State government to run her farm.

To encourage other young farmers, the entrepreneur writes a blog about farming where people can discuss ways of improving their farm strategies.

“We are bringing a new energy to the game you know, we are trying to collaborate. It is not about them and us. It is about how do we work together because space is huge. It is big enough for all of us. We are not just trying to feed Nigeria; we are trying to feed Africa.

“When we are done with Africa, we are going to feed the world, and for us to do that successfully, effectively and efficiently, we have to work together, male or female. Gender isn’t a divide; it is really your commitment and your passion that will really differentiate you,” she said.

At Lekki Farm, Oladunni Otitoju keeps and sells cattle, goats, rams, turkey and chicken. She started her business three years ago with just five goats after leaving her job as a civil servant.

Oladunni says it was not easy at first. At one point she lost her initial flock of 50 chicks to a disease.

“When I started a lot of my friends thought I was crazy. They actually told me; look at you, you are going dark, you are always in the sun, but it was something I enjoyed doing.

“I enjoyed feeding you know the animals; I enjoyed feeding grasses to those animals. I enjoyed looking at them if they were okay,” said Oladunni.

Nigeria has been trying to diversify its economy to boost agriculture after it slipped into its first recession in 25 years last year, brought on by low prices for its mainstay, crude oil.

The country spends $20 billion a year importing food. With the fall in oil prices, it has been running short of dollars, which has also weakened the local currency.

“I think more food for everybody, more food for the masses. I mean if there is food nobody cares what happens to the economy, everybody will be happy and there will be less crime in the society and there will be peace,” said Oladunni.

Agriculture has the potential to reduce African poverty two to four times faster than any other sector according to experts. It employs nearly two-thirds of the population on average, with women producing most of the food.

Tackling Unemployment: kwara Govt. Promises 20,000 Jobs In Agriculture

Unemployment, kwara, 20,000 Jobs, AgricultureThe Kwara state government has restated its commitment towards addressing youth unemployment with the resolve to create 20,000 jobs in the agriculture sector.

The state Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources, Adegoke Bamidele, made this known while addressing journalists in Ilorin, the state capital.

He revealed that the government has concluded plans to create the jobs for youths who are interested in agriculture adding that they would be selected across the 16 local government areas of the state.

“There are no criteria for selecting the youths in agricultural business as it is the only alternative source of revenue for government to generate revenue.

“If 20,000 youths are empowered in agricultural business, it will boost the Gross Domestic Products of the state and also enhance its economic development.

“The youths will be trained on farming, piggery, animal husbandry and fishery among others.

“Private organizations are sacking workers on daily basis but the only secured job is skilled jobs and the idea is to make the youths not to depend on government jobs alone but also be self employed,” Mr Bamidele added.

Anambra Launches 2016 Dry Season Farming

Obiano Meets Industrialists, Seeks Solution To RecessionAnambra State Governor, Willie Obiano, has flagged off the 2016 ‘dry season farming and agric show’ in Awka, the Anambra state capital.

According to the governor, he is advocating for an all season farming practice, as he believes that as climate is changing, food production and agricultural processes must also change.

The programme was attended by over 5,000 farmers and representatives of various cooperative groups from the 21 local government areas of the state, gathered to be part of the new initiative.

Re-enforcing the new farming initiative, the governor announced the introduction of practices and technology that would help reduce food losses through better technology for harvesting, storage, packing, transport, infrastructure and market mechanism, as well as institutional and legal frameworks.

The flag off which took place at the ABS Headquarters, Awka field, featured distribution of farm inputs, fertilizers, pesticides, improved and high yielding seedlings, as well as handover of motorcycles to deserving farmers for farm to farm movement.

With a strong resolve to ensure food security and sufficiency, Governor Obiano has made agriculture the number one pillar of his administrative blueprint.

Also, in the budget proposal for the 2017 fiscal year, a budget of 5.4 Billion Naira has been earmarked for agriculture alone, in which the state aims at being one of the top three producers of rice, maize and cassava.

With the challenges of climate change and the growing population however, there is need for agriculture and food system to find means of adapting to the adverse effects of climate change and becoming more resilient, productive and sustainable.

It is for this reason that thousands of farmers and cooperative groups gathered to re-dedicate themselves to the course of agricultural development.

The arrival of the governor charged up the arena where various food crops were on display for the agricultural exhibition.

He then moved round to inspect the crop harvest of 2016 as well as felicitate with the farmers.

While addressing the farmers, Obiano commend them for their steadfastness in the trending occupation and assured them that the state would support them with every necessary equipment needed.

He ended the event by distributing various farm inputs such as certified rice seeds, high variety vitamins, a termite free cassava stems and agricultural facilitating equipment like pesticides, irrigation equipment, tractors and motorcycles.

Women cooperatives, on the other hand, presented a gift to the governor and commended him for the support he has been giving them especially in the area of making available off takers who buy off their farm produce upon harvest.

The representative of the Minister Of Agriculture, Mr Albert Odukwe, stated that the governor’s resolve to embark on all year round farming is a demonstration of his commitment to agriculture as a serious business which all must embrace.

The state Commissioner for Agriculture, Mechanization, Processing and Export, Mr Afam Mbanefo, also announced the agricultural success of the outgoing year.