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Published On: Tue, Nov 12th, 2019

FCTA ups measures to boost food security, agribusiness

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By Stanley Onyekwere

As part of its measures to make the desired impact of harnessing the potentials of the Agricultural sector, the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has inaugurated an 8-Member Technical Committee to re-evaluate past agricultural programmes.
In particular, the FCTA amongst others wants the Committee to review the past programmes of its Agricultural and Rural Development Secretariat (ARDS) towards repositioning it for improved service delivery in the agricultural sector.
It was gathered that the committee members are drawn from the various arms of the ARDS, in order to provide a broad coverage and perspective of the various agricultural programmes.
According to the Director of Administration and Finance in the ARDS, Mr. Ibe Prospect Chukwuemeka, setting up the committee has become imperative in order to put the Secretariat on the track of realising its mandate of making the sector more economically viable for investment and achieving food security.
Ibe, who spoke while
Inaugurating the committee in his office explained that FCT has continued to witness rapid increase in population, which has put pressure on government in terms meeting their demands.
He reiterated that the agricultrual sector has the capacity to provide jobs and source of meaningful livelihood for residents which is why efforts must be made to create the enabling environment for investment.
“There is no doubt that the FCT has abundant potentials in the Agricultural sector what is required is proper planning, so that we can get the implementation right.
“ Your mandate as a committee is to work relentlessly in re-evaluating the programmes of the Secretariat and make recommendations on best way forward,” he stressed.
Responding, the Chairman of the Committee, Mr Yahaya Husseni who is also the Director, Planning Research and Statistics in the Agric Secretariat, thanked the FCT Authorities for the confidence reposed in them to carry out the task.
He promised on behalf of the committee to bring their experience to bear in carrying out their assignment.
According to him, the committee will reach out to all relevant stakeholders in the public and private sectors to accommodate their views.
Our correspondent reports that the terms of reference of the committee include: carry out a retrospective evaluation of existing interventions on production and safety with view to highlight impacts and limitations on growth; harmonize the current programmes of interventions, in order to develop medium and long term agricultural policies for the operation of ARDS with clearly defined deliverables for sustainable food production.
Others are; carry out an overview of existing capacities with the aim of establishing a training model/template for the professionalization of personnel development in ARDS, and review all the revenue generating services with a view to improve performance and blocking of leakages.
Also, the committee is to highlight operational activities in relations to extant rules and identify areas that require enforcement by recommending standards and regulations; highlight various strategies that should be adopted by ARDS to encourage the teeming population of youth and women into agriculture for job creation and empowerment.
Furthermore, the committee is to carry out a detailed study of the various partnerships of ARDS with private companies in order to establish their impacts on agricultural development,and to further identify new activities that can be supported by Public Private Partnership ( PPP) for accelerated food production and service delivery.

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