World Food Day: Obaseki anchors Edo’s post-COVID-19 economy on agriculture, technology innovation
The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has reiterated that the state’s post-coronavirus (COVID-19) economy would be anchored on robust agricultural programmes and technology-driven solutions to healthcare, education and other aspects of the economy.
The governor, who said this in commemoration of World Food Day marked by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), noted that a lot of investment has gone into reviving the state’s agricultural sector to ensure that it becomes the bedrock of the state’s economy.
According to him, “As we mark the World Food Day, I reiterate my administration’s commitment to drive sustainable agriculture as the mainstay of the state’s economy. We have reformed our land management system through the Edo State Geographic Information Service (EDOGIS), which has ensured that investors can easily process land titles for commercial agriculture. The state’s College of Agriculture is being revamped with three campuses created across the state to train skilled manpower for the sector.
“This is in addition to other incentives we have provided for investors in the agricultural sector so there would be no bottlenecks when they come to do business in our state.
“Aside the support we have given to the commercial farmers, who have since commenced operations in Edo State in large scale farms, we are also providing support to smallholder farmers to ensure an even spread of economic activities and emplace a sustainable approach to driving growth in the agricultural sector.”
“We have also deployed technology to drive reforms in healthcare, education and other aspects of the economy. The deployment of technology in agriculture would ensure that our farmers get inputs and other support through a technology-driven process in conjunction with our implementation partners.”
The governor noted that the state government has deepened partnerships with local and international actors to expand the area under cultivation in the state, supporting farm developments for maize, cassava, rice, and poultry, among others.
He noted, “We have ensured women inclusion in our agricultural reforms as we are confident that more empowerment for women would improve livelihoods in families of smallholder farmers across the state.”