Ogbeh seeks continuation of Buhari’s agric legacies
The former Minister of Agrculture and Rural Development (FMARD), Audu Ogbeh, has re-emphasised the need to sustain the legacies of the outgoing administration, aimed at reviving the agricultural sector.
Ogbeh, who stated this at a symposium organised by the All Progressives Congress (APC), held at the Yar’Adua centre in Abuja, lamented the biting poverty, hunger and the spate of insecurity in Nigeria and other sub-saharan African countries.
He added that sustaining President Muhammadu Buhari’s agric legacies, will not only guarantee food security, but reclaim the sector’s position as a major foreign exchange earner for the country.
“We will have to focus on agriculture. If we don’t feed well, there would be no democracy. We can do it,” he said. Stating that the manifesto of the party’s presidential candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu was well designed and thought out, he counselled Tinubu to focus on particular parts of country that specialise on crops and other agricultural produce they have comparative advantage, as was the case when the northern, eastern and western regions specialised on the production of groundnut, palm oil and Cocoa in the first republic.
He enjoined any of the presidential candidates to create a department of rural development to fix the problems associated with poverty and infrastructural decay across the 774 local councils in the country, if voted into power.
Ogbeh said: “It’s trite knowledge that the local council system has collapsed completely. It is simply not working. Every month the average allocation to each local council is N200m.”
“We can’t see graders on our rural roads, or repairs in our village market stalls, yet our women pay rents and all manner of taxes. Why would we allow a system like that to remain? We thought they would be granted autonomy, but we haven’t seen that happen.”