The NGF also pledged to improve post harvesting processing plants
The Nigeria Governors Forum, NGF, rose at the end of their retreat, Friday, with a pledge to place a “special focus” on attracting youth back to agriculture to reduce Nigeria’s teeming unemployment.
In an 11-point communique, released at the end of the retreat, in Lagos, the NGF also pledged to improve post harvesting processing plants, stakeholders’ inclusion and participation in agricultural
policy formulation and implementation.
“Several states are already making giant strides in the area of agriculture as unveiled in our state peer review programme. Forum urges the continuation of these initiatives to increase the impact of
agriculture value chain on our national economy,” said Rotimi Amaechi, the Rivers State Governor, who read the communique.
“Agricultural policies should be long-term and geared towards rigorously tackling the challenges militating against agricultural productivity and yield, such as desertification, soil erosion, soil degradation, flooding and social challenges like insecurity and constraints to access to land and finances,” the communique added.
In attendance at the session include Babatunde Fashola, the Lagos State Governor; Kayode Fayemi, Governor of Ekiti State; Aliyu Wamakko, Governor, Sokoto State; Adams Oshiomhole, Edo State governor; Abdulazeez Yari, Zamfara State Governor; Segun Adesegun, Ogun State Deputy Governor; Eze Madumere, Deputy Governor of Imo State; Titilayo Laoye-Tomori, Deputy Governor of Osun State; Peter Kishira, Kwara State Deputy Governor; and Bukola Saraki, a serving Senator and Former
Chairman of the NGF.
The governors also urged for the outlining of agricultural policies in the country – with the federal government focusing on policy and regulatory framework while the states tackle implementation and land tenure management.
On the issue of corruption, the governors said its “debilitating impact” on national development and the adverse human development indices require a concerted effort to combat it in both the public and private sectors.
“The anti-corruption battle should be anchored on a massive program of national value-orientation involving the state sector, private sector and civil society,” read the communique.
“That the fight against corruption needs strong political will, moral leadership, certainty of sanction and commitment of governors to succeed and pledged to fill the role.”
The forum also pledged to continue to accord high priority to education by improving access to all, including the girl child, and transforming educational curriculum.
“There is a need to revisit funding to reflect constitutional mandate while addressing the tyranny of unfunded mandate posed by distorted federalism.
“As part of enhancing educational quality and access, the nation should consider reintroduction of teacher training colleges and addressing policy issues posed by federalism,” the communique added.
The forum stated that it had adopted the strategic plan for 2014 – 2016.
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