By Deborah Oladejo, Osogbo
Farmers in Osun State have stated their readiness to partner with the State Government on the effective management of agricultural surplus.
This is even as they reechoed the need to strengthen the agricultural value chain in the state, as well as, export for agricultural products.
This was revealed in separate meetings with informal groups and farmers organized by the Special Adviser to Governor Adegboyega Oyetola on Civic Engagement, Hon. Olatunbosun Oyintiloye held at Ileogbo City Hall, Ileogbo, Ayedire Local Government.
The financial secretary of Farmers’ Association in Ayedire local government, Mr. Rufus Olayiwola, who spoke on behalf of other farmers at the family meeting, said Osun is an agricultural hub in the southwest where a large number of people engaged in farming.
He noted that there is a need for agricultural surplus to be managed for mutual benefits of the government and farmers.
According to him, “Farmers in the state are ever ready to work with the government to improve the inclusive value chain in the state agricultural sector; which will always place emphasis on identifying possible ways in which small-scale farmers can be incorporated into existing or new value chains or can extract greater value from the chain, either by increasing efficiency or by also carrying out activities further along the chain.
“If the government can work with the farmers in ensuring that the whole range of goods and services necessary for an agricultural produce to move from the farm to the final customer or consumer is controlled, it will not only save the farmers of losses, but also facilitate a sustainable export process wherein the government can generate revenues.
“Exportation to foreign countries is indeed achievable with the rate at which farmers are cultivating land insofar the government embraces partnership that will focus on agricultural value chain in the quest to minimum waste,” Olayiwola said.
He lauded Governor Oyetola’s ingenious leadership and managerial dexterity with which he had achieved a remarkable milestone in all the sectors of the state economy such as education, health, infrastructure, commerce, human capacity building, among others within borrowing a dime, despite the paucity of funds.
While commending Oyetola for rehabilitating and opening new rural roads through the institution of Osun Rural Access and Mobility Project (ORAMP) for the seamless transportation of farms products to the markets, he urged the government to do more in fixing up some of the rural roads.
In their separate remarks, the representative of Road Transport Employers of Nigeria (RTEAN), Com. Alimi; Com. Ajayi Wahab representing National Union of Road Transport Works (NURTW); the ACOMORAN Chairman, Com. Harun Qudus gave kudos to Governor Oyetola for fixing up most roads in the state despite the meagre resources, appealing to the government to help them in rehabilitating some other roads in the state including Ayedire.
Speaking on behalf of the other trade unions and artisans present at the event, Mr. Taofeek Agboola of Nigeria Association of Patent and Proprietary Medicine Dealers (NAPMED) pleaded with the government to consider them for empowerment programs, soft loans and grants among other value-added benefits needed for boosting their businesses as well capacity building in the state.
In his remarks, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Civic Engagement, Olatunbosun Oyintiloye, harped on the need for a regular interface between government and various groups in the state.
Oyintiloye said was another pointer to Oyetola’s resolve to engender inclusive and participatory governance in the state where the people can have inputs in the policy formulation process.
Oyintiloye emphasized that Oyetola’s administration is people-driven, as that had been the reason why Oyetola makes policy and programs of his administration in strong alignment with the feelers and opinions of the masses.