Technques in Harnessing the Potentials of Rural Communities for Positive Agricultural Transformation in South-Western Nigeria: Potentials of Rural Communities, Concept of Agricultural Transformation, Strategies to Enhance Rural Communities

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Rural Communities in South Western Nigeria remains the hub of agricultural activities in terms of crop and livestock production for the populace. Numerous potentials abound in the rural areas but surprisingly, they have been grossly underutilized and these have deleterious effects on the rapid agricultural transformation of the rural areas. Prior to the Nation’s independence, agriculture was the main source of foreign exchange earner. The onset of the Civil wars of late 60’s prompted the government to look for alternative sources to prosecute the huge cost of the war. The advent of the oil boom in Nigeria in early 70’s marked the downward trend in agricultural production and rural transformation in Nigeria. Regular drifts of able bodied men and women from rural areas of the country in search of non-existent white collar-jobs further weakened and depleted the rural labour workforce. Attention of individuals and those of the government now shifted to the Urban areas particularly in areas of banking, finance, science and technology, Information and Communication Technology (ICT) etc to the detriment and development of rural areas for agricultural purposes. Various government initiatives all aimed at food production and self sufficiency have not yielded positive results either and contrary to the giant strides in agricultural revolution recorded in Asian and some Latin American Countries as a result of Green revolution concept of 1970s. This paper takes a cursory look at the potentials of rural communities for positive development, the concept of agricultural transformation in South Western Nigeria and the inherent benefits; and the techniques in harnessing and enhancing potentials of the rural communities. Recommendations and suggestions in the quest for the rural and agricultural transformation are suggested.

Keywords: Techniques, Transformation, Oil Boom, Poverty, Green Revolution.
Stream: Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Gender
Presentation Type: Virtual Presentation in English
Paper: Techniques in Harnessing the Potentials of Rural Communities for Positive Agricultural Transformation in South Western Nigeria

Dr. Edwards A. Alademerin

Lecturer, Department of Agricultural Production and Management Science, Tai Solarin University of Education
Ijebu Ode, Ogun, Nigeria

Almost 12 years out of 25 years of teaching and lecturing, I have been involved in skills training programme for students in tertiary institution. Apart from my normal primary assignments of lecturing Agricultural Education courses, I also coordinated the Students Industrial Work Experience Scheme (SIWES) and Centre for Research and Development in Primary Education (CERDEP). SIWES is a skill training programme designed to expose and prepare the students for the industrial working situation they are likely to meet after graduation. It is a compulsory part of the programme towards acquisition of the Nigeria Certificate in Education (NCE). I have been involved in the retraining exercises and workshops for Senior Extension Officers and Community Development Officers at the Lagos State Local Government Service Commission, Ikeja-Lagos for over six years. My Doctoral research work between 1998 – 2001 was in the area of Programme Impacts Evaluation on Cassava research and development in Southern Nigeria. The research exposed me to the inherent attributes of Cassava as a Poverty Alleviation crop in the tropical world. The study also equipped us with all the necessary skills and rudiments required in the successful planning in the areas of poverty alleviation programme and initiatives on the poor and the marginalized. I have no doubt that the experiences l have gained during the doctoral field work have prepared me for better challenges ahead in adequate service delivery to mankind.Presently i lecture agriculture courses in my University. My previous and present positions have sharpened my horizons as they prepare me for greater tasks and challenges ahead in life.

Ref: I08P0534