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Stakeholders engage women in Agroecology

By Fatima Muraina

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In bid to cushion the effects of hardship and make food available for all, Ondo state women have been encouraged to acquire land  for Agroecology.

To this end , stakeholders  have appealed to Ondo state government for provision of accessible land for women for agricultural purposes.

The women made the request at a stakeholders engagement on land access ,control and ownership for smallholder women Farmers and young people in agroecology.

Speaking at the event, the state Coordinator of Small scale women Farmers organization of Nigeria -SWOFON, Mrs Bukola Oyediji, said the  association was created 12 years ago as a coalition for women Farmers organization to promote the use of agroecology across the state.

Oyediji described agroecology as a sustainable farming system which works with nature, a farming method that promotes organic farming without the use of chemical for planning.

She mentioned her organisation’s challenges to include lack of processing and lack of storage facilities in the state, poor access to extension services at the rural communities and lack of credit scheme for SWOFON to boost their Agriculture production.

In addition, she mentioned poor road network and lack of government patronage which she said government should help in addressing them.

The programme which was held in Akure was organised by Actionaid Nigeria in partnership with Justice Development And Peace Centre (JDPC) under strategic partnership on agroecology and climate Justice West -Africa (Spac) project .

The programme which is aimed to facilitate critical conversation on issues around access, control and ownership of land for SWAHFS and young people with the key influence is also to  address gender inequality and cultural barriers affecting women in decision making on land.

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The organisers advocated for young people to have access to land for farming purpose and production of food for  the people.

Reacting, Chairperson of the Nigeria Association of Women Journalists, NAWOJ, Ondo State Council, Comrade Tola Gbadamosi, called on government at all levels to make land available and accessable to women for farming activities.

Gbadamosi stated that women Journalists are always ready to disseminate SWOFON  activities in the state and beyond, saying that members are present across the existing media outfit in the state.

She charged SOWFON on showcasing their farm products to the public for patronage.

She however tasked organisers of the programme to always contact Journalists whenever they are organizing such Programme.

She said the group is the best to promote and project their activities to the people of Ondo state and the world at large.

Similarly, the International Federation of women Lawyers (FIDA) Nigeria advocated for the rights of the women at all levels.

Representative of FIDA, Mrs Olufunmilayo said women have right to own land and protection which should be allowed without any form of discrimination.

The participants on the other hand want to ensure that they grow edible agricultural products for human consumption.

Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, Mr Oloruntoba Ogunmolawa advised  SWOFON leadership to declare a day as SOWOFON day for showcasing their agricultural produce.

Also discussed was that government should ensure buying the individual fallow in the communities and give them out to the women living in such community for production , to make food available to all.

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