ABEOKUTA – The 76th Inaugural Lecturer of the Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta (FUNAAB) Ogun State, Prof. Johnson Adewunmi, has charged the Federal Government to help farmers, through extension agents in ministries and local government areas of the country, to put in place, effective conservation measures at mitigating flooding on farmlands.
Prof. Adewunmi gave the charge while delivering his lecture of the institution titled: “Soil and Water Dynamics as the Eleventh Commandment”, held at the Oluwafemi Balogun Ceremonial Building of the University.
According to him, the prevailing patterns of agricultural production in Nigeria, particularly in the most-affected areas by flooding needs, to be critically reviewed by the Federal Government, adding that local farmers affected by flooding should be trained in the area of water harvesting techniques.
The don reiterated that using water harvesting techniques would increase farmers’ productive capacity under a combination of excessive demographic pressure and unsustainable agricultural practices in the valley areas prone to flooding.
The Inaugural Lecturer, who is of the Department of Agricultural and Bio-resources Engineering, College of Engineering (COLENG) of FUNAAB, stressed that for any sustainable effort, irrigation project must be made to be participatory, saying this would encourage local assistance, which produces sustainable impact over the long term.
He added that the Federal Government, must out of goodwill, release grants for rehabilitation of these projects for onward privatisation and joint management for all River Basin Development Agencies (RBDAs).
Prof. Adewunmi, however, revealed that the conflict between farmers and herdsmen had been recognized as a serious socio-economic factor that could affect production and productivity of any scheme and urged the government to established grazing areas “for farmers that are not under RBDAs”.