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By Richard P. Ngbokai Nov 23 2017
wheat farmersWorld Bank’s Transforming Irrigation Management in Nigeria (TRIMMING) project’s agri-business specialist, Malam Hallai Garba has urged the government at all levels to recruit farm extension service workers to train local farmers on best agronomic practices for improved annual productivity.
He made the call in Kano during the graduation ceremony of 1300 farmers trained under the World Bank’s project at Kura local government area of the state.
He emphasized that unless farmers are introduced to new innovations in best global agricultural practices their annual yield will always fall below expectations.
He said training farmers would enable them diagnosed and address agronomic problems on their farms at formative stage before it poses disaster to their crop.
He decried the current farmer/extension worker ratio in the country saying it is far below the World Bank standard
‘’The expected farmer ratio today has actually gone beyond what can be considered as tolerable in Nigeria. The recommended rate by World Bank is one extension worker to 30 farmers but today our extension workers in Nigeria, each of them is attending to 3000 farmers and we believe that this ratio is not the best.
‘’We are encouraging the government at the local state and federal level to always step up whatever effort they are putting to make sure that they recruit adequate number of well-trained extension staff. Approved extension practices would be disseminated to the farmers and that would help in raising the productivity of the Nigerian farmers’’ he added.
He also advised farmers to change their orientation towards farming, urging them to take it as a business rather than an activity or a pass time for the unemployed.
He said ‘’Nigerian farmers need to change from doing farming the usual way to doing farming, and looking at it as a business; saying ‘’unless farming is considered as a business, until a farmer continue to see farming as a means of transforming his N5 into N15 or N20 tomorrow, farming will not be able to make any meaningful improvement in the country.
https://www.dailytrust.com.ng/agri-business-expert-urges-govt-to-recruit-extension-workers.html

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