By Emem Idio
YENAGOA—THE senator representing Bayelsa West senatorial district, Chief Foster Ogola, has urged rural farmers in the state to embrace agricultural best practices to improve their yields and income, stating that agriculture was a serious business.
Ogola, who gave the advice in Sagbama Local Government Area of the state, while declaring open a two- day training workshop on farm set-up for plantain cultivation and value addition for rural farmers, as part of his empowerment initiatives for his constituents, urged the farmers to tap into the opportunities that abound in commercial agriculture.
The senator, who was represented by his legal adviser, Mr. Afini Egbegi, said the objective of the workshop was to teach the rural farmers onimproved new skills and agricultural best practices in plantain and fish farming where the people have comparative advantage, adding that it was better to teach the people how to fish than to give them fishes.
He said: “The time of doling out gifts and cash to young men and women is gone as the expectations have been dampened by the realities of today. This programme is expected to educate our rural farmers and give them the opportunities to acquire new skills in plantain and fish farming to better their lives.”
In his address, Executive Director of Nigeria Stored Products Research Institute, NSPRI, Professor Olufemi Peters commends Senator Ogola for sponsoring the workshop, pointing out that the training was expected to examine ways to minimize food losses and explore alternative uses of food through value addition, thereby contributing to food security and increase livelihood of the rural people.