Cassava Production: Kogi State to Engage 1000 Extension Workers

Cassava Production: Kogi State to Engage 1000 Extension Workers

Gilbert Ekugbe

The Kogi State Government has announced plans to engage over 1000 extension workers in its bid to boost cassava production in Nigeria.

The Commissioner for Agriculture, Kogi State, Mr Timothy Ojoma, during the inauguration of the State Executive Council of the Cassava Cottage Processing Marketing Association (CACOPMAN) in Lokoja, stated that the move is to ensure that extension workers have up to date information on cassava.

Ojoma said that the state government would provide 80 per cent of the work by bringing in tractors, improved stems, fertiliser, chemicals and clearing the land.

“We have already mapped out about 48 areas in the three senatorial districts of the State for this purpose. 

“We are also providing extension services by engaging over 1,000 extension workers to ensure that our farmers have up to date information on the cassava. 

“We are also intervening in rice and maize production,” he said.

He said that the extension services will include translating the information into the three main languages in the state so people to understand the best practices and up-to-date information about climate change for them to do the right thing for the desired results.

“Our farmer-friendly Gov. Usman Ododo, is very much interested in food production and security, which explains why his first engagement in the office was on agriculture,” he said.

The commissioner also said that the state government has concluded training of enumerators for a forthcoming biometric capturing of all farmers across the state for useful data.

He challenged the new leadership of the CACOPMAN to encourage members to key into the state government’s food production programmes for the attainment of food security in the state.

Earlier in his Speech, the CACOPMAN National President, Mr Segun Ilori, tasked the new executive council to live up to expectations in boosting cassava production in the state.

Ilori said that there were several incentives from the government and Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs).

Also speaking, the State President of All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN), Mr. Salihu Adobauji, encouraged the cassava farmers to ”weather the storm” of the economic hardships and produce food in the farming season.

In his acceptance speech, the new state CACOPMAN Chairman, Mr. Ufana Hussein, said that cassava has the potential to industrialise Kogi and Nigeria as a whole.

Hussein said: “From cassava processing, we can have some industrial inputs such as starch, for both edible and non-edible grade, cooking gas, organic fertilizer, animal feeds from the peels, gari, fufu (wet and dry).”

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