The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has distributed ICT materials to the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD) to facilitate data management.
This initiative was aimed at boosting food security via credible and timely data and information planning.
Items distributed include desktop computers, tablets, printers, local area network equipment, memory cards, internet modems, monitors, projectors and presentation pens.
Country Representative of FAO, Mr. Fred Kafeero noted that the event was part of the activities to commemorate this year’s World Food Day.
Kafeero who was represented by the Assistant Country Representative, FAO, Suleiman Abubakar, said that data and statistics were crucial to the planning and execution of agricultural policies, plans and strategies.
“As part of the strategy to support the Government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to strengthen its data and statistical systems, FAO launched a Technical Cooperation Programme (TCP).
“It is aimed at strengthening Institutional Capacity for Improved Data and Information Systems for Policy Planning and Tracking the SDGs in Nigeria.
“The project development objective is to enable inclusive and evidence-based decisions, policies and strategies for agriculture and natural resources at selected federal and state institutions.
“It’s expected outcome, therefore, is to reinforce the competencies of the statistics units of the participating institutions and departments to generate, analyse, store and disseminate credible and timely data and information for policy planning and tracking of the SDGs,” Kafeero stated.
He pointed out that the project which supports various interventions will be implemented in four states which include Adamawa, Cross River, Kano and Lagos State as well the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja.
Kafeero further stated, “Our expectation is that the Statistical Coordination Committees, which I am told were actively operational in your ministries in the past, can be resuscitated for proper harmonization and validation of the data and statistics within the ministries.”
On his part, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Ernest Umakhihe while receiving the ICT equipment, expressed that the application of ICT in data generation, analysis and management was very important.
“Indeed, the provision of these ICT materials would greatly support the Ministry not only in tracking SDGs but also in analysing the sector’s performance at national and continental levels for overall socio-economic development across the country,” Umakhihe said.
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