Experts Brainstorm On Herders-Farmers Clashes
Tunde Akanbi, Ilorin
The Acting Vice Chancellor of the Kwara State University, Malete, Professor Shaykh Lukman Jimoh, has called on the experts in agric sector to brainstorm and find lasting solutions to the issues fueling conflict between herders and crop farmers in the country.
Professor Jimoh made the call while declaring open a training programme on “Pasture and fodder technologies for improved cattle production, youth empowerment and reduction of farmers- herdsmen conflict in Nigeria.”
The programme was organised by the Aeres University of Applied Sciences, Netherlands, in collaboration with the University of Ibadan and Kwara State University, Malete, North Central, Nigeria..
The acting Vice Chancellor expressed the hope that the training would address the challenges facing herdsmen and farmers in Nigeria as well as foster technology in the feeding of cattle, especially during dry season .
The Don urged the participants to network and share knowledge that would be acquired at the training to transform the agricultural challenges to opportunities, saying that Kwara State University is committed to driving innovation and technology.
Professor Jimoh, therefore, appreciated the Dutch Government for championing the training, adding that the institution is opened for robust opportunities for its staff and students.
Speaking via Zoom, a Senior Lecturer at the Aeres University of Applied Sciences, Peter Tesselaar, said “the University received about 250 proposals, but only thirty were approved, thus paving way for the participants to benefit from the training.”
Tesselaar noted that learning is the engine for growth and change, challenging professionals in the agric sector to keep developing themselves.
He said “I believe in a society based on constant development of knowledge and skills needed for working life in a sustainable way.”
The Training Coordinator from the Department of Animal Sciences, University of Ibadan, Professor Olusola Olorunnisomo, said the programme sponsored by Netherlands Government was aimed at bringing development to where it is lacking, saying that the purpose is to train agricultural experts and extension workers in pasture production and fodder.
In his remarks, the Head of Department, Animal Production, Fisheries and Aquaculture, Kwara State University, Professor David Friday Apata, attributed the problem causing herders and crop farmers clashes on non-availability of feeds most especially during dry season, and encouraged the use of modern technology by farmers.
Professor Apata noted that the topic is germane to ensure that the trainees acquire skills in cattle production.
Also speaking, a Professor of Ruminant Nutrition at the Kwara State University, Dupe Olufunke Ogunbosoye, affirmed that the programme was designed to address the clashes between herdsmen and crop farmers, saying “herders during the dry season always look for pastures for their cattle and that’s why we decided to train them on how to use modern technology to preserve their pastures for dry season.”
The training, Professor Ogunbosoye, said, it is necessary for farmers, farmers to be, and extension agents to share the knowledge and skills to be acquired with others who are not opportuned to attend the training.
The 16 participants at the training were picked from the Ministry of Agriculture, Oyo State, University of Ibadan, Kwara State Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources, and the Kwara State University.