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How to Reverse Nigeria’s Flood, Climate Woes (II) – KUST VC

In this second and final part of AGRONIGERIA’S EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW with the Vice-Chancellor of the Kano University of Science and Technology, Wudil (KUST) and Professor of Agricultural Economics, Shehu Musa, the don explains, among others, how state governments can play active roles in drastically reducing the impact of climate change problems on Nigerian farmers and agribusinesses.

5. Do you think the current models employed to solve Nigeria’s climate unpredictability problems are sustainable – or what new models would you suggest?

The answer is yes at the moment. I think the models being adopted can still be sustained. However, what we really need, as I have told you, is to ensure synergy of actions to ensure that results are at the disposal of everybody. ICT enables you to do this easily. I think this is the right time for FMARD and NiMET to deeply engage in the utilization of the tools of ICT to liberalise the dissemination of knowledge on agricultural practices.

It would be a very decisive step if we could progress with the establishment of supercomputer centres through collaboration with FMARD, NiMET and the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology.

 

The adoption of advanced computational strategies comes very handily here through the use of supercomputer centres. The Kano University of Science and Technology, Wudil (KUST), in the last of 4-5 years has made attempts to establish a supercomputer centre in the varsity to provide and handle large volumes of data on Nigerian climate variability. It would be a very decisive step if we could progress with the establishment of supercomputer centres through collaboration with FMRAD, NiMET and the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology.

6. What parts or roles are the state governments playing in addressing the problem of climate change in Nigeria?

It is very difficult to access the level of contribution of state governments to climate change mitigation efforts. However, overall, they can do better by way of utilising information provided by NiMET and FMARD. State governments can establish their own computational centres. Again, I would say that state governments’ efforts need to be enhanced and improved.

Many people will ask, “You have not solved common problems, why are you thinking higher and bigger?” But I always say this: “ICT waits for no one.” We must catch up with the speed of ICT development. So, it is high time the government worked things out on the deployment of ICT for climate change mitigation.

 

7. Moving forward, how can the government invest in climate-smart agriculture?

It is high time the Nigeria government ensured that ICT is incorporated into our agricultural activities. Climate-smart agriculture is one of the issues that the Federal Government must now begin to think about to adopt as a strategy to deal with these issues.

Climate-smart agriculture uses an integrated approach to get results for the different areas of agriculture from crop farming and livestock development to fisheries and forestry through tracing and tracking. Nigeria cannot be left behind.

 

Climate-smart agriculture uses an integrated approach to get results for the different areas of agriculture from crop farming and livestock development to fisheries and forestry through tracing and tracking. Nigeria cannot be left behind. We should remember that climate-smart agriculture offers a number of advantages including increases in yields, resilience for the farming system, reduction in greenhouse gas emission and improved organic agriculture practice, among others.

Many people will ask, “You have not solved common problems, why are you thinking higher and bigger?” but I always say this: “ICT waits for no one.” We must catch up with the speed of ICT development. So, it is high time the government worked things out on the deployment of ICT for climate change mitigation.

The government can ensure that smallholder farmers adopt climate-smart agriculture only through a complete revamping of the Nigerian extension delivery system. It is only through this farmers will adopt whatever system we are providing, being it smart or traditional agriculture.

 

8. How can the government ensure that smallholder farmers adopt climate-smart agriculture?

The government can ensure that smallholder farmers adopt climate-smart agriculture only through a complete revamping of the Nigerian extension delivery system. It is only through this farmers can adopt whatever system we are providing, being it smart or traditional agriculture.

Apart from extension, the government needs to train and provide modern facilities to farmers. In addition, they also need to deploy the cooperative system of agriculture. When we disseminate information via cooperative groups and community groups, it becomes easier. So, even if the extension agent is not available, they are able to discuss among themselves.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the second and final part of AGRONIGERIA’s exclusive interview with the don. You can find the first part of the interview here: https://agronigeria.ng/2020/11/27/how-to-reverse-nigerias-flood-climate-woes-1-kust-vc/

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