With Kehinde Oluwatayo
A call has gone to the Ministries of Agriculture and Information at the state and federal levels to begin a thorough sensitisation of the public on the prediction of NIMET that there would be late onset of rain this year.
An agronomy expert and acting Provost of the Federal College of Agriculture FECA, Akure, Dr Emmanuel Moyinjesu made the call in an interview with The Hope in Akure.
Moyinjesu was reacting to the prediction of the Nigeria Meteorogical Agency NIMET that there would be late onset of rain and that agricultural activities would be eminently threatened this year.
While calling on the organs of government to leverage on the advance information, Moyinjesu urged them to sensitise the public particularly farmers in order to prepare to mitigate the effect of the late rain.
The expert who also charged media organisations to play their part advised that town hall meetings should be organised for farmer groups to look at strategies to employ to mitigate the effect.
Reeling out some strategies that can mitigate the effect, Moyinjesu said government should look at how to increase the irrigation facilities in the country so that farmers can go there when there is shortage of rain.
“The first strategy is how to increase the irrigation facilities. A lot of rivers are flowing without being used. They should look for small, medium and large scale irrigation services. Let them prepare and when there is shortage of rain, farmers can go there”, he advised.
He also advised that seeds that are highly matured should be planted so that even with little rain, they can grow.
“The farmers also need what we call insurance scheme because there is going to be drought and whatever they planted may suffer loss, there will be insurance scheme to mitigate that so that on their farm, they can get one or two things.
“Government should make available loan, not only loan, they should also make available tractors that will speed up the farm operations”, he said
H e stressed the need for inter-governmental agencies and called for a bill that will establish climate response commission adding that the bill will include weather prediction, bringing mitigation services and preventing future occurrence.
He also called on government to encourage farmers by passing into law measures of marketing their products to prevent losses.
Moyinjesu however advised farmers to go to farm on time, do water harvesting and interact with farmers in other places to know what strategies they are using to mitigate the effect of late rain.
Above all, Moyinjesu called on Nigerians to pray to God who determines the pattern of rain and live righteously.
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