November 13, 2018
Nigeria with its abundant natural resources should be self-sufficient in food production but the reality on the ground is terrible hunger and poverty. AFROAGRICEXPO LLC is a Consulting service prepared to work with the Nigeria government to help set up multiple farm clusters and cooperatives that can assess funding, trading and markets etc. Based on this premise, the principle of AFROAGRICEXPO LLC. Dr. Njideka Kelley organized a two- day conference in Abuja in 2018 to bring the discussions and dialogue to the fold.
The 2-day conference on Food security and Food Sustainability for Africa beginning in Nigeria attracted stake holders such as Farmers, Insurance companies, livestock farmers, research institutions, students and entrepreneurs, embassies, press and others. The conference was declared open by the organizer; Dr. Njideka Kelley who thanked participants for coming and charged speakers and audience to deliberate and proffer solutions to the various challenges faced by farmers that contribute ultimately to the lack of Food security in the country. She promised to visit area farms, set-up a data base of attendees and farmers and ensure that grants and resources via her organization are directly given to the farmers since government “has kept quiet” to the plight that are faced by farmers.
The Participants observed that:
The conference was organized by AFROAGRICEXPO LLC. and Partners
There were 4 main Speakers on Day one who spoke on various issues affecting food security and food sustainability. They are:
Dr. Mrs. Gloria Elemo of the federal Institute of Research Oshodi represented by Dr. Oyedoyin Bolanle
Owner and CEO of Sub-Sahara Farms Ms. Emmanuella Ibeawuchi
Mr. David Westbrook of SOOUM Corp. Phoenix Arizona on alternatives to Nomadic grazing methods. And
CEO of Energy and Corporate Africa, Mr. Sonny Oputa who spoke on the Use of Drone Technology for improved and better agricultural developments.
Day 2 began with a Panel discussion led by Mrs. Margaret Nongo-Okojokwu, CEO of mirror energy who focused primarily on challenges, making agriculture attractive for young entrepreneurs and issues of pesticides and lack of funding.
Following this session was Mrs. Folashade Joseph (represented) of NATIONAL AGRICULTURE INSURANCE CORPORATION who encouraged farmers to be insured as a way of ensuring food security.
A tour of exhibitor’s booths and press conferences took place as well. Day 2 ended with a highly interactive session by the speaker of the day; MR. Kaosiso Anaekwe who is Google country representative did great justice to his topic of; using digital marketing to improve agriculture
The 2-day session was highly interactive with lots of question and answer sessions from participants.
Following the discussions, the organizers adopted these resolutions:
Nigeria Government especially the Ministry of agriculture should, as a matter of urgency, work out strategies for improving service delivery by transforming its internal processes and providing exemplary leadership to the people.
The ministry of Agriculture should liaise with State governments of agriculture to set up satellite offices where farmers can seek advice regarding their crops/livestock, receive training, obtain assistance to apply for government funds.
The ministry should partner with organizations such as New Generation consulting to continuously find solutions to farmers. They should pair Farmers to various consultants for training, direct access to funds and other resources as necessary and possible
The governments should adopt best practices in promoting transparency and accountability in the ministries Farmers have a right to be informed of available government funding for agriculture. These should be posted openly in the ministry headquarters and a step-by-step requirement and guide to applying and obtaining these funds.
The government should encourage commercial banks to lower their interest rates for agriculture further and make assess to loans for agriculture easier for farmers.
The government should encourage R & D in agriculture. They should assist FIRRO to conduct research that will support agricultural findings and promote food security.
Governments should develop smart strategies for formalizing agricultural sector and should provide active support to both SMEs and large industries, especially in the area of value chain development, in order to improve revenue mobilization and fiscal independence.
The Government should lower Tariff on export and import of agricultural products. They should encourage organizations bringing in agricultural equipment and machinery by waving 100% duty on such products.
The Ministry of agriculture should continue dialogue with AFROAGRICEXPO LLC. in the discussion on construction of Cattle Ranches, grazing Fields, fodder production and Cross-Breeding of Cattle to enhance Milk production and Beef production.
In addition, SOOUM Corp through AFROAGRICEXPO LLC should be consulted on construction of Hygienic Slaughter houses as well as Commodities Trading. (These discussions were portrayed during the Principal’s consultant Dr. Njideka Kelley’s visit to Chief Audu Ogbeh.
The Minister Chief Ogbeh is advised to hasten these discussions and put them to use for the betterment and development of the agriculture sector in Nigeria.
Dr. Njideka Kelley.
AFROAGRICEXPO LLC. Houston, TEXAS.