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Coalition wants 35 percent agric budget for female farmers 

By Tina Abeku, Abuja
13 December 2020   |   3:31 am
Small Scale Women Farmers Organisation in Nigeria (SWOFON) has called on governments and stakeholders to replace the use of old farming tools with mechanised equipment for efficient food production, just as 35 percent of agriculture budget should be allocated strictly to female farmers.

Small Scale Women Farmers Organisation in Nigeria (SWOFON) has called on governments and stakeholders to replace the use of old farming tools with mechanised equipment for efficient food production, just as 35 percent of agriculture budget should be allocated strictly to female farmers.

President, SWOFON, Mrs. Mary Afan, made the call in Abuja during a town hall meeting tagged ‘Retire The Hoe to The Museum’, with stakeholders in the agriculture sector consisting of members of the National Assembly, government and private sector representatives. 

Afan said despite decades of calls and promises of improving crop production, Nigerian farmers, made up of over 70 percent women, still use the same old farming tools for food production, noting that other nations of the world are ahead in food production because they practise mechanised farming. 

She laments that despite consisting more than 75 percent of farmers in Nigeria, women’s specific needs are not catered for in the national budget for agriculture.

“They are hardly beneficiaries of most government’s intervention in the sector, reason 35 percent of the budget should be allocated strictly to female farmers,” she said.

Representative of the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture  (IITA), and Head of Communications, IITA Abuja office, Tengu Abuar, said food production, availability and security are central to national development, which can only be achieved through modern mechanised farming.