South-South women trained on climate change adaptation strategies

Effect of climate change on crops

By Victor Uzoho

The Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD), on Monday trained selected women farmers from the South-South zone of Nigeria on climate change adaptation and mitigation strategies.

Speaking at the maiden training workshop in Benin City, the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Mohammad Abubakar, said Nigeria’s agriculture sector is vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, hence the need to build resilience in combating the threat and effects of climate change on agricultural production.

He said the workshop, themed: “Gender mainstreaming into climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies for women farmers,” is apt and timely following the recent United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow, Scotland.

Abubakar, represented by the Edo State Director, FMARD, Wellington Omoragbon, explained that the state was chosen as one of the pioneer states to kick-start the series of workshops, as it is situated within the rainforest agro-ecological zones facing ecological challenges due to the impact of climate change.

“Indeed, it is rain-fed dependent. Any change in the weather pattern, in terms of the amount, intensity, duration, affects farmers’ decisions in terms of the crops and inputs as well as other cultural operations in the value chain,” Abubakar said.

He noted that challenges such as climate change, access to information and technologies are major setbacks despite having a larger percentage of women in agricultural production.

In all these, we ensure there is a 60:40 ratio for men and women farmers; in some cases, it is all women like we have in cassava processing.

“As you are aware, the National Gender Policy in Agriculture was approved in 2019, with the thrust hinged on gender equity and equality for optimum productivity in the agricultural sector.

“This, ultimately, would ensure commitment to gender mainstreaming at all levels of the agricultural sector, which is seen as a tool for achieving gender-based reforms and increasing productivity by men and women along all the value chains in the sector,” he added.

Remarking, the Permanent Secretary, Edo State Ministry of Agriculture And Natural Resources, Peter Aikhuomobhogbe, commended the Federal Government for creating a platform where women farmers can be enlightened on how to limit climate change impact, to improve agricultural production.

Aikhuomobhogbe said: “Edo state has put in place strategies and a lot of interventions to support agriculture. Our focus and support are in the areas of maize, rice and sorghum for crop farming; rubber and oil palm for cash crop as well as livestock productions.

“In all these, we ensure there is a 60:40 ratio for men and women farmers; in some cases, it is all women like we have in cassava processing.”

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