By Boluwatife Akinola
Members of West Agro Input Dealers Association (WAIDA), Ondo State Chapter, yesterday organised a programme and a road show to sensitise Ondo residents and farmers on the need to patronise only registered agro-products and avoid unregistered ones.
The programme sponsored by Conservation Alliance Development Initiative (CADI) and The Foundation for Partnership Initiatives in the Niger Delta (PIND) was to encourage unregistered agro-input dealers to join the association (WAIDA) for the many benefits such as linkage with registered agro-input companies and access to finance.
Speaking at the programme, held in Akure, WAIDA Chairman, Dele Oguntiloye stated that the aim of the association is to move closer to stakeholders in agro business and to get rid of fake agro chemical products from the market so that farmers and residents can get quality agro products from time to time.
He noted that the verification platform by CADI will enable a well trained agro dealer to recommend a perfect product for use on farm lands.
“A well registered agro dealer will tell you the chemical to use when you tell them the situation of your farm, they will explain how to use it and at what intervals to use the chemicals,” he said.
Also, Director of Technical Services of CADI, Ondo State Chapter, Mr Ade Adesida said the body had created a solution to verify Agro-input dealers in the state.
Adesida stated that the association needed a verification platform to separate fake dealers from the original input dealers and how the platform can aid the market share of the association.
“We are here today to engage with Agro dealers in Ondo state to see how we as a body, through WAIDA, can provide better services to farmers in the community and how they can increase their market share of opportunities in the community.
“If they are verified, they will have opportunities to better market, so that is why we are creating this platform” he added.
“We need to verify and validate the authenticity of the Agro inputs dealers, we should know who they are. When we know who they are, we will be able to enforce these regulations”
He added that through the solutions and the platform they have provided, the Agro dealers will see opportunities and leverage on them.
However, Adesida stated that they are partnering with Globus bank to give financial service to WAIDA.
“On the challenges on how they can sell safely and responsibly, we are introducing to them the farm services model, which will give them the avenue to extend their services to the communities and not necessarily wait for farmers to meet them”
Reacting, the Branch Manager of Globus Bank, Omolara Ogunmodede noted that the Agro dealers should follow the right process before applying for financial assistance from the bank.
She mentioned that they should not pay money directly to the companies, rather they should make sure the money passes through their account before paying to the company as this will enable the bank to know their capacity and know how they will be able to payback when given loans.
Ogunmodede urged the Agro dealers to borrow from the bank when needed and not borrow money because they feel it is right for the bank to give them loan.
WAIDA went round Akure in a road show to sensitize people on where to get quality products from members and to invite agro-input dealers that are not members to join WAIDA so that they do not sell unregistered chemicals to people.