By Ephraim Oseji
African Farmers and Cultural Organisation (AFCO), a non-governmental and non-profit making organisation concerned about African food security, fair trades and tourism, is encouraging farmers’ corporation through diversified exchange of programs in keeping with world peace. In this interview, the Founder/Convener of AFCO, Chief Chukwunwike Esiole Moses, bares his mind on issues concerning the organisation and the forthcoming African Crops and Cultural Festival to be held in Nigeria.
What is AFCO all about and its objectives?
AFCO is a non-discriminatory organisation which aligns with the principle of Africans Union, United Nations and UNESCO. The organisation is open to all for the promotion of African produce and cultural heritage without prejudice to race, gender, religion, political affiliation or social status. AFCO is endorsed by International Organisation of Folk Art (IOV-World) for the keeping of the UNESCO Convention of Safeguarding the Tangible and Intangible Global Cultural Heritage. It boosts of a robust platform for connection of African farmers and agro-commodity producers regardless of location and promotion of projects that will assist in increasing farming and cultural infrastructure in Africa.
How old is the organisation in Nigeria and your achievements so far?
We started two years ago and have been consulting widely, meeting with traditional rulers, captains of industry, technocrats and culture enthusiasts for endorsement, We are educating stakeholders on our mandate which is primarily promoting the culture of “eat what we produce and produce what we eat” and the response is awesome. With the feedback we are getting, indeed, we believed that AFCO is committed to contributing its quotas to revamping our ailing economy.
AFCO is planning to organise the African Crops and Cultural Festival soon. What are the objectives of this Festival?
We would like to look inward to what has delayed us from producing enough food and certain beliefs that have kept us for so long in one position while we have the capacity to build a bridge of farmers cooperation to share knowledge and resources amongst potential community producers and commodity providers within. Also we are bringing together innovations from Africans in Diaspora and at home to forge a common front to start improving on what we produce and create a platform whereby we will see farming and culture as a profession.
What are your plans to get support?
As soon as we are done with the inauguration of the executives to run the organisation, we are planning to visit some royal fathers as the custodians of culture and tradition for their participation as AFCO Traditional Royal Fathers. We intend visiting HRH Igwe Godwin Nnaemeka, the Eze Idegwu 111 of Achina, HIM, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi,(Ojaja11), the Ooni of Ife, HRH. Alh. Muhammad Abubakar 111, the Sultan of Sokoto, HRH. Igwe Alfred Achebe, the Obi of Onitsha, etc for their endorsement. We are also meeting the federal and state governments through the various ministries responsible for agriculture, trade and investment, outh, culture and tourism, etc.