Arising from the first rainfall experienced across Ogun State, the Ministry of Agriculture has cautioned farmers not to commence year 2020 planting.
The Commissioner for Agriculture, Dr. Adeola Odedina, threw the caution during a meeting on the Roadmap of the Ministry, held at the Conference Room of the Ministry, saying the advice became imperative, as the first rainfall was capable of luring farmers into tilling of land for planting.
He said that, apart from providing enabling environment for all categories of farmers in the State and linkage with relevant anchors, the Ministry has an obligation to periodically enlighten farmers on the exact period to commence planting.
Corroborating, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Dr. Dotun Sorunke submitted that the need to educate farmers on the exact period for next planting cannot be over stressed, for their efforts not to be in futility.
Giving a talk earlier on “Cascading and Discussing the General Effect of 2020 Seasonal Rainfall Prediction”, as predicted by the Nigeria Meteorological Agency (NIMet), Director of Tree Crops in the Ministry, Mr. James Oyesola said farmers must be adequately guided, so as not to rush into planting, describing the first rainfall as “false onset”.
He charged farmers to watch out for severe dry spell that may last for 10 to 21 days in the course of the year over the coast of Lagos, Ibadan, Akure, Iseyin, Ilorin, Ado Ekiti and some parts of Ogun State, labelling the period as a “little dry season”.
Oyesola maintained that government was poised at achieve self-sufficiency through the different agricultural policies, as it continues to avail farmers more on climate information services, needed for behavioral changes in farming practices, skills, knowledge, crop advice for rural farmers among others.
He said farmers should be abreast of weather and climate information, adopt smart agriculture, improve productivity, in order to build resistance and cropping pattern adjustment among others.
Also present at the meeting were the Special Adviser to the Governor on Agriculture, Dr. (Mrs.) Angel Adelaja-Kuye, Project Manager, Ogun State Agricultural Development Agency (OGADEP), Ms. Taiwo Ayansanwo, as well as other management staff of the Ministry.