By; BAYO AKAMO, Ibadan
The Vice Chancellor, Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile Ife, Professor Eyitope Ogunbodele on Wednesday advised the Federal Government to with immediate effect, legislate against free range of domestic animals like cattle.to end the frequent bloody clashes between herdsmen and farmers in Nigeria.
Professor Ogunmodede gave the advice in Ibadan while speaking at the opening of 2018 annual in-house review exercise of the Institute of Agricultural Research and Training (IAR&T), Moore Plantation, Ibadan, themed, “Agricultural Research and Sustainable Food and Raw Materials Promotion: The Challenges of Climate Change”.
According to the OAU VC , it was unfortunate that in most cases, domestic animals such as cattle willfully destroy farms thereby resulting into clashes between crop and livestock farmers .
“Federal Government should legislate against free range of domestic animals that often willfully destroy farms and causing clashes between crop and livestock farmers (cattle herdsmen). ” he said.
To avert such, Professor Ogunmodede stressed that it is now time for the government to discourage all activities that could lead to deforestation and promote afforestation and that efforts must be put in place to reduce effects of climate change by supporting activities that are capable of militating against climate change for food security, industrial growth and survival of the nation’s economy.
“Government should discourage all activities that lead to deforestation and promote afforestation. We cannot flog the issue of inadequacy in animals budgetary allocation to agriculture which has never enjoyed the 10% international recommendation. Government should provide more funds to National Research institutes. “
Speaking further, the OAU Vice Chancellor maintained that there should be nothing stopping Nigeria from being food and nutritionally secured, if government can guarantee market to farmers by removing the activities of middlemen in marketing of agro-materials and food crops.
“Nigeria will be food and nutritionally secured, if government will promote a guarantee market to farmers and the activities of middlemen be removed from marketing of agro-materials and food crops.”
Professor Ogunmodede however emphasized the need for education on effect of climate to form an integral part of school curriculum as a way to create more awareness about climate change, saying that ”
education on the effect of climate change should form an integral part of school curriculum to be taught at all levels of agricultural science. Subsidy on agriculture by governments should target farming activities that can stern he effect of global warming and climate change. This subsidy should focus more on those farming activities that can address water, energy and chemical changes of production.
“We should all go extra mile to support activities and programmes that are capable of mitigating climate change for enhanced food security desirable industrial growth and survival of the national economy”.
In his remark, the Executive Director of IAR&T, Professor James Adediran tasked state governments across the country to revive the agricultural development programmes which he said served as bridge between the research institutes and local farmers.
Professor Adediran disclosed that so far, the institute has trained no fewer than 700 unemployed youths from various parts of the county in livestock production such as piggery, sheep and goats among others and that there is the need for research institutes in the country to embark on demand driven, climate smart and market oriented projects.
“There must be proper dissemination of research findings by agricultural extension and advisory services support experts. The state governments must also revive the agricultural development programmes which serve as bridge between the research institutes and local farmers. The research institutes must be well funded with appropriate and conducive environment created for effective research and innovations. All these will promote economic growth and development in the country”.