Participants at the Yobe agricultural summit say the event has the potential of making farming attractive, thereby encouraging people in the state to harness its gains.
The participants, who spoke in Damaturu, said the four-day retreat had enhanced the working synergy among stakeholders in agriculture, with a view to charting a new course for the sector.
Alhaji Usman Bala, a sesame seeds farmer in Damaturu, said he had been cultivating the crop through traditional method, without technical knowledge.
“I have never had the opportunity of improving my knowledge or having extension workers visiting the farm to offer professional advice, until this time,” he said.
Another farmer, Musa Abdullahi, said although agriculture remained the dominant occupation in the state, it had never been given the attention it received during their summit.
He suggested that agricultural officers should be adequately empowered to effectively provide services to farmers.
Mohammed Tahir, a participant however, called on government to also give livestock farming the desired attention.
“Every household in Yobe is engaged in animal husbandry; this should be enhanced and expanded to empower the local people for economic growth,” Tahir said.
A farmer, Alhaji Bukar Damagum, called on government to promote irrigation farming in the wetlands and other areas with large water reservoirs.
“Due to the uncertainties of climatic change, we experience floods like this year, in which many farmlands were destroyed;there is need to promote irrigation farming,” Damagum said.
Kaka Ali, another farmer, urged Yobe government to canvass for extension of federal government agricultural programmes to farmers in the state to enable them benefit state.
Yobe government had organized a retreat on agriculture to chart a new course for food security and economic growth.
The summit had in attendance, Governors Abubakar Bagudu of Kebbi and Abubakar Badaru of Jigawa, as well as experts in the field of agriculture.