OYO STATE CAN BE RUN DIFFERENTLY – LIP-SERVICE TO AGRICULTURE

Despite the existence of high potentials for market-oriented agricultural production, farming activities in States is mainly for subsistence. Consequently, our policy intervention intends to look beyond the normal focus of input and output relationship, and delve refreshingly into the provision and management of other factors that affect the input and output variables in agricultural strategy in Oyo State.

Hence, the policy thrust should have been an integrated framework which basically focused on assisting farmers through low interest credit intervention, technical support to enhance the expertise to produce, provision of subsidised warehousing, rural infrastructure, farm access roads (not glittering show offish urban roads), agricultural research and extension services, adequate irrigation services and regulated marketing outlets. To date, the cashew and mango potentials of the State are waiting to be harnessed to compliment the cash and crops produce which are already in place but poorly managed.

It is a well known fact that to get out of youth unemployment quagmire where we have found ourselves, agro-processing must be explored actively with heavy financial backing and expertise in place of the current haphazard and tentative half hearted policy of this current administration. The way to go to have a competitive agro-processing in Oyo State should be creation of processing clusters across the senatorial zones and infrastructural supports (roads and utilities – electricity, water etc)… input supply and productivity enhancement, knowledge management, project management and coordination (value chain management – backward and forward linkages), and financing (credit and subsidies).

A credible administration must follow through on its promises but Governor Ajimobi launched the AGRICOYO in 2016 at an expensive ceremony, and delivered a paper titled THE ROLE OF THE FOREST in November 2012 at Iseyin with a mandate to provide 50 hectares for the 33 local governments with provisions of fast growing seedlings, the agricultural profile of the State has remained largely the same because nothing has been done like in other instances, to follow through on these promises.

– Engr Seyi Makinde

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