The Soil Science Society of Nigeria (SSSN) has urged the Federal Government to engage relevant experts in its quest to meet up with the food demand and food security in the country.
Prof. Bashir Raji, the President of the Society, who made the call in an interview with Journalists in Abuja, commended the government for its numerous transformation agenda in the agricultural sector.
Raji however, emphasised that those numerous and beneficial programmes needed to be centrally coordinated.
According to him, such coordination requires the inputs of soil scientists for robust output.
“Government is doing well, there is a lot of transformation going on in agriculture, but these programmes need to be centrally coordinated with the input of experts.
“Because soil resources are very fragile and once you lose them they are gone forever, an example is the Egyptian civilisation’ that relied on irrigation but was consumed by soil salinization.
“So, in our quest to meet up with food demand, we need to manage our quest with scientific management of these soil resources, therefore, government should bring in experts on all their programmes in agriculture,’’ he said.
Raji advised that government should engage the services of experts, especially soil scientists, saying that they were ready to partner with government.
He said that his members were ready to ensure that proven technologies to manage and conserve these soil resources were made available to government while noting that food security depended on inputs and that the first input in any agricultural venture was the soil resources, the seed, agrochemical fertiliser and appropriate management of all these resources put together.
According to him, in order to sustain food production and nutrition security in the country, government should ensure first and foremost that the soil resources are well managed and viable seed ventures are put in place for farmers to utilise in full.