PBR Cowpea: AATF, NAERLS Collaborate To Educate Farmers

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Lead Scientist Pod Borer Resistance (PBR) Cowpea, Professor Ishaku Mohammed Fagus (right) during press briefing on the new specie at the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria on Thursday June 13, 2019. With him the PBR Cowpea Farm Manager is Dr. Mohammed Lawal

By; IBRAHIM ADAMU, Kaduna

The African Agricultural Technology Foundation (AATF) is collaborating with the National Agricultural Extension and Research Liaison Services (NAERLS) to provide useful and timely information to farmers across Nigeria on the appropriate use of the PBR Cowpea technology.

It would be recalled the PBR Cowpea (SAMPEA 20-T), a genetically modified cowpea variety, developed by the Institute for Agricultural Research, ABU, Zaria was officially named, registered and approved in Nigeria in December 2019 for onward release to farmers for cultivation.The signed agreement between AATF and the Ahmadu Bello University based NAERLS for the implementation of the collaboration noted that both organizations will bring their expertise and wealth of experience to bear in the training of farmers and extension workers across the country. 

It also said that with the technical support of Institute for Agricultural Research, Zaria and AATF, NAERLS is expected to coordinate extension services and develop training modules that target relevant players in the cowpea value chain across the country.

Prof. Emmanuel Ikani, Technical Coordinator, AATF-NAERLS collaboration noted that: “the agreement entails the development of modules, training of 600 extension agents and 6000 farmers on the appropriate use of the PBR Cowpea technology.

NAERLS on the strengths of its capabilities and experience as an agricultural extension research and liaison services has the capacity and equipment for effective service delivery in core activities of Extension services, Research and Training and will be able to deliver the expected outputs in this agreement.”

NAERLS will also develop and dissemination of audience participatory gender sensitive e-extension services using the National Farmers helpline and social media platforms to deploy PBR cowpea information.

Other responsibilities to be undertaken by NAERLS include the development and management of youth-friendly, gender sensitive radio and TV programmes as well as multi-media packages to increase awareness and promote adoption of PBR Cowpea. 

NAERLS according to the agreement will also facilitate the development and dissemination of simple, user-friendly extension support publications that will provide the public the right information on PBR Cowpea 

AATF is an African-led not-for-profit organization that is working towards agricultural transformation to address food and nutrition security and generate health and wealth for smallholder farmers through access and delivery of innovative and fitting agricultural technologies.

 AATF believes that farmers in Africa will become globally competitive through use of the best technology, optimal agricultural practices, strategic product value addition and boosted access to efficient markets within and outside Africa. https://www.aatf-africa.org/about-us/

The National Agricultural Extension and Research Liaison Services (NAERLS) is one of the 17 National Agricultural Research Institutes (NARIs) under the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD). 

The Institute was established to develop, collate, evaluate, disseminate agricultural technologies and conduct research in agricultural extension methodologies and policy. 

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