The Vice Chancellor, Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Professor Eyitope Ogunbodele has called on Federal government as a matter of urgency to legislate against free range of domestic animals such as cattle in order to forestall incessant clashes between crop and livestock farmers across the country.
He made the plea while addressing the gathering at the opening of the 2018 annual in-house review of the Institute of Agricultural Research and Training (IAR&T), Moore Plantation, Ibadan.
The theme of the programme was “Agricultural Research and Sustainable Food and Raw Materials Promotion: The Challenges of Climate Change”.
While advising the government to discourage all activities that lead to deforestation and promote afforestation, the OAU VC lamented that domestic animals like cattle are often willfully destroy farms, hence, causing clashes between crop and livestock farmers.
He also advising that efforts must be put in place to reduce effects of climate change by supporting activities that are capable of forestalling climate change which are beneficial to food security, industrial growth and survival of the nation’s economy.
Stressing further, Ogunbodede said Nigeria will be 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.
According to him, “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).
“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.
“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.
He informed further that education on effect of climate must also form an integral part of school curriculum as a way to create more awareness about climate change.
“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”.
Executive Director of IAR&T, Professor James Adediran while highlighting feats recorded by the institute in the last one year, however, urged state governments to revive the agricultural development programmes which he said served as bridge between the research institutes and local farmers.
Adediran informed that 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.
He urged research institutes 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”, Adediran concluded.