Small scale female farmers in Gombe State have decried the impact of the farmer-herder conflict on farmers, especially in the state.
The women, under the aegis of the Gombe State Chapter of the Small Scale Women Farmers Organisation (SWOFON), noted that the situation has resulted in the abandonment of farms.
The association made this observation during a one-day public hearing, organised by the Public Financing for Agriculture, in collaboration with the Hope Foundation for the Lonely and ActionAid Nigeria.
Represented by the Chairman of the Budget Committee, Atiku Yahaya, the group noted that the spate of farmer-herder clashes will invariably lead to food scarcity in the state.
“Making farms safe and funding agricultural mechanisation will create not only more food but also jobs to engage restless youth that has turned to crime for a living. Without solving food-farm security issues, we cannot solve the state’s security issues.
“With rising hunger and social insecurity as well as farmer-herder conflict, the peace of Gombe State will continue to be threatened. Farms are being abandoned due to social security threats and natural disasters.
“The government should deliberately strengthen security mechanisms and systems to mitigate farmer-herder conflict,” Yahaya said.
Also, the group lamented the poor allocation of funds to the agriculture sector and the group in particular.
“The forum observed a marginal increase in agricultural budget allocations in the State between 2012 and 2021.
“However, these allocations still fall below the Maputo/Malabo declaration benchmark of 10 per cent, like that of 2021 budget on Agriculture is 3.3 per cent but the 2022 proposed fiscal budget has just 1.8 per cent of the overall budget for Agriculture in Gombe State.
“Regrettably, non-release of budgeted funds especially to SWOFON and the sector continues to impede the capacity of Government to drive socio-economic development including food security within the policy thrust of the diversification with the focus on Small-scale women farmers of the economy towards agriculture,” Yahaya added.
SWOFON, therefore, harped on the need to have more public investments in the sector; especially in the areas of access to credit facilities, extension services, research and development, improved technology as well as women and youth participation.
The post Group Decries Spate of Farmer/Herder Clashes in Gombe first appeared on AgroNigeria.
The post Group Decries Spate of Farmer/Herder Clashes in Gombe appeared first on AgroNigeria.