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FG Trains 40 Extension Agents In Rivers

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To ensure sufficiency in food production and enhance agricultural development in Rivers State, the Federal Government through the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has commenced the training of 40 extension agents selected from the 23 local government areas of the state.
The four-day capacity training is the second batch of the training series designed by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development in collaboration with the National Agricultural and Research Liaison Services (NAERLS) to acquaint the selected participants with the knowledge of extension tools, methodologies and selected agricultural value chains.
Speaking at the opening ceremony of the programme held at the Rivers State Agricultural Development Programme (ADP), Rumuodomaya in Obio /Akpor Local Government Area of the state, Wednesday, the Minister for Agriculture and Rural Development stated that extension workers are critical and invaluable to the development of agricultural sector in every given society.
Represented by the state Director FMARD, Mr Ebinimi Tobin, the Minister said that agricultural extension services predate the independence of the country, about 120 years ago precisely in 1893, saying that the agric extension services have metemorphosed from one stage to another as it is important to rural and semi urban development with regard to food and job provisions.
He described agricultural extension delivery services as a vehicle for all agric policies and research, adding that without which, all efforts in the ecosystem would not realise its objectives
“This training is one of the various strategies planned by the Federal Government through the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to halt the drift in the extension services with the aim to pursue revalidation agenda of the nation’s economy. This training is the second batch that will empower you all with the knowledge that will enhance service delivery to farmers both in terms of production practical and equipment technical support. It is the desire of the Federal Government and every Nigerian that the nation agric extension services meet up global competitiveness to have adequate food provision for the growing population and augment foreign earnings,” he stated.
Also speaking, the Director of Extension, FMARD, Engr Frank Satuman Kudia represented by the Agric Officer, Mrs Gloria Ibroma said the training is one among the various recommendations of the special technical committee set up by the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development to among other things assist to develop a workable framework and actionable programme for the immediate training of 75 extension workers in collaboration with state ADPs.
According to him, the unwillingness by the youth to embrace agricultural entrepreneurship, poor funding, retirement and death of extension workers are key factors responsible for the decline in the national agricultural extension services in the country.
“The training is designed to empower participants with desired skills in the use of extension delivery methodologies and tools as well as best global agricultural value chains chosen by the various state ADPs. This training provides you with various logistics and manuals which will help you all practise in the emerging technologies in the sector. So, take the workshop seriously, “he stated
Declaring the training workshop open, the state Commissioner for Agriculture, Dr Fred Kpakol commended the Federal Government for taking the bull by the horn by training the extension agents whom he described as essential workers for the advancement of the agriculture sector in the society.
The state Commissioner who was represented by the state Coordinator of FADAMA, Sir Kingsley Amadi, described the extension workers as pivotal to the development of agriculture.
He disclosed that it was the importance the state government attaches to agriculture that is responsible for its investing in the sector through building model garri factory, model Abattoirs as well as building a modern Veterinary Clinic, among others.
Earlier in his address of welcome, the Programme Manager, ADP, Chief David Darius urged the participants to take the workshop seriously, adding that they are to carry the message to the farmers at the rural communities even as he described the roles of extension workers as very essential in every aspect of human endeavor.

By: Akujobi Amadi

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Registrar Lauds RSG For Sponsoring Candidates To Write Neco Exam

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The Registrar of National Examination Council (NECO), Prof. Dantari Ibrahim Wushishi, has commended the Rivers State Government for its patronage in sponsoring candidates in public schools to write NECO examination.
The Registrar made the commendation over the weekend when he visited the State Commissioner for Education, Dr. Ovy Chinedum Chukwuma in his office in Port Harcourt.
He disclosed that Rivers State was the first among other States to patronise NECO and to also support their operations in the State, adding that the gesture was because of the government’s high regard for education of its citizens.
He stressed that the examination body is highly challenged to continue to provide, quality service to the nation, hence, the running cost of the council is from funds generated from registration fees from candidates of which Rivers State is given high patronage.
In his words, ” The Federal Government does not give us any appropriation to conduct the examination. Federal government only provides personal cost for payment of salaries. Whatever we do to conduct examinations and deliver to nigerian are all generated from registration fees and other sundry fees associated with the examination”, he said.
Responding, the Commissioner for Education, Dr Ovy Chinedum Chukwuma, said registration of candidates for the examination is a direct result of the high premium the state governor, Sir Siminalayi Fubara placed on education in the State.
In his words, “we have deep commitment and partnership with NECO and we are ready to do more, “adding that the Ministry will not fail the expectations of NECO on them and encouraged them to place NECO globally, such that it would be recognised all over the world.
The commissioner and the registrar with their different teams also monitored the on going NECO Examination together in the State.

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15 States Risk Severe Flooding This Month -FG

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The Federal Government has issued a warning about potential severe flooding in 15 States due to heavy rains expected later this month.
The Federal Ministry of Environment, through its spokesperson, Haruna Ibrahim, announced that these States should brace for significant rainfall from July 21 to July 25, 2024, which could lead to widespread flooding.
According to the release, the states are, Adamawa State, Benue State, Jigawa State, Borno State, Kebbi State, Kano State, Kaduna State, Katsina State, Kogi State, Nassarawa State, Niger State, Plateau State, Sokoto State, Taraba State, Zamfara State
Steps for Effective Flood Preparedness
1. Stay Informed: Monitor weather forecasts and heed local alerts. Use trusted sources like government websites, local news stations, or radio for real-time updates.
2. Emergency Kit: Assemble an emergency kit that includes non-perishable food, water, medications, flashlights, extra batteries, and crucial documents. Keep it in a place that’s easy to access.
3. Elevate Electrical Units: Lift electrical systems and appliances above expected flood levels. Disconnect them during heavy flooding to avoid electrical hazards.
4. Use Sandbags: Deploy sandbags to shield your home. Arrange them effectively to redirect water away from critical areas.
5. Secure Loose Items: Fasten down outdoor items such as patio furniture and garbage bins to prevent them from becoming hazardous in strong winds.
6. Evacuation Plan: Familiarize yourself with local evacuation routes and plan accordingly. Determine safe locations or higher grounds for refuge.
7. Flood Insurance: If you reside in a flood-prone zone, consider getting flood insurance since typical homeowner’s policies do not cover flood damage.
8. Communication Plan: Set up a reliable way to stay in contact with family during a crisis. Make sure everyone knows the emergency plan.
9. First Aid Skills: Acquire basic first aid knowledge to help yourself and others in emergencies.
10. Avoid Floodwaters: Never attempt to walk or drive through floodwaters. They can be unexpectedly deep and forceful, presenting severe dangers.

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Jonathan Urges NDDC To Complete Abandoned Projects In N’Delta 

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Former President Goodluck Jonathan has urged the Ministry of Niger Delta Development and the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) to prioritize the completion of abandoned projects in the region.

He also encouraged state governments within the Niger Delta to collaborate closely with the NDDC, so as to foster efficient synergy to achieve legacy goals.

This is as the Minister of Niger Delta Development, Engr. Abubakar Momoh, has emphasized the urgent need to address environmental sustainability and economic diversification in the Niger Delta.

Speaking at the Niger Delta Stakeholders Forum 2024, at the Obi Wali International Conference Center, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, the former President commended the Minister and the NDDC board and its management for their effective performance so far and advised them to complete all abandoned projects.

On his part, the Minister of the Niger Delta Development and Chief host, Engr. Momoh, while speaking on the theme, “Renewed Hope for Sustainable Development of the Niger Delta Region,” emphasized the urgent need to address environmental sustainability and economic diversification in the region.

The Minister in a statement by his Special Assistant on Media, Osigwe Omo-Ikirodah, highlighted efforts like the Ogoni Clean-up Project and initiatives for cleaner energy such as Compressed Natural Gas (CNG).

Momoh stressed the importance of diversifying the Niger Delta’s economy by investing in various sectors and pointed out the region’s untapped potential in tourism and the blue economy.

He assured the audience of the government’s commitment to infrastructure development, citing recent projects like the 25.7km Ogbia-Nembe Road in Bayelsa State.

He said that the summit’s theme was a call to action, aligning it with the ‘Renewed Hope Agenda’ of President Bola Tinubu’s administration and emphasizing the need for collective effort to harness the region’s resources and cultural heritage for sustainable development.

He also emphasized the need for peace and security in the Niger Delta, urging all stakeholders to address the root causes of unrest and conflict.

Momoh advocated for inclusive development that reaches every community, prioritizing the empowerment of women and youth.

In his remarks, President of the Senate, Godswill Akpabio commended the Ministry of Niger Delta Development and the NDDC’s board and management for their commendable work.

He highlighted the stalled East-West Road project, emphasizing the need for strategic project management and continuity.

A former Governor of Cross River State, Mr. Donald Duke called for investments in agriculture, tourism, manufacturing, and technology to ensure the region’s long-term prosperity.

The event, co-hosted by NDDC Managing Director Samuel Ogbuku and Board Chairman Chiedu Ebie, was graced by former President Goodluck Jonathan; Senate President Godswill Akpabio, who represented President Tinubu; Senator Adams Oshiomhole; former Cross Rivers Governor Donald Duke; former Bayelsa State Governor Seriake Dickson; and traditional rulers from across the Niger Delta.

Other attendees included Senator Asuquo Ekpenyong, HM Ekperikpe Ekpo, Ondo State Governor, Lucky Aiyedatiwa, the Abia State Deputy Governor, Senator Monday Okpebholo, and Minister of Interior Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo.

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