Minister of Agriculture, Chief Audu Ogbeh, has urged the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations (NIPR) to use the power of communication as an essential tool for feedback mechanism of any good initiative as President Muhammadu Buhari-led government plans to develop the vast potentials of the Agricultural resources.
This includes the modern ways of farming to farmers even in the most remote part of the country. Nigerian Institute of Public Relations is essential in the effective extension delivery service.
Also in dissemination of prime information on policy and programme marketing to key stakeholders by reaching out to the grassroots, the tertiary institutions, and farmers at all levels, farm tool manufacturers and international interest groups and organisations must be accepted as a key responsibility of communication sector.
This message was delivered by Dr. (Mrs) Aweh, a director in the Ministry of Agriculture who represented the Minister, at the Annual General Meeting of the NIPR held at the Premier Hotel, Ibadan recently.
The Theme of the AGM Conference was “Networking for National Economy of Self-reliance – the Synergy of Agriculture and Communication”
Aweh stated that in order to encourage the growth of certain crops in Nigeria, the federal government have developed a transparent mechanism of importation of improved grass seeds through due procurement.
With all the efforts of Mr President Muhammadu Buhari to invest on Agriculture as a way of diverting the economy from oil to Agriculture, it is also conscious of the fact that a 4 year tenure would not be enough to achieve a 360 degree turn around of economy, hence the federal ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development according to Aweh took a bold step of designing a 4-year road map for quick wins. The agenda focuses on the private-sector driven agricultural activities at all levels and facts for both agro-export and food security.
She therefore urged NIPR to take interest in building supportive linkages and networks by linking our towns by publishing research results for various agro-allied institutes and schools.
In his presentation, Dr. Laofe Ogundipe, Dean Basic clinical sciences Afe Babalola University, challenged NIPR to urgently embark on communication campaigns extolling the virtues of agriculture in order for our country to achieve desired socio economic development goals. He said Germany used allotment gardens to start their industrial revolution and banish hunger and poverty. The People took to allotment gardens following strategic communication of need to do so. Nigeria can attain similar development if we use communication to embrace agriculture. This is the synergy that will lead to development of our economy.
In attendance was the deputy Governor of Oyo State who represented the Oyo State Governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, in his remarks, he recognised the role of NIPR as strategic in every country to wants to succeed and encouraged them to work closely with both federal government and states to achieve economic and policy best practice.