Stakeholders have raised concern that Nigeria has been losing $382.5 million yearly to the European Union (EU) ban on beans exportation in the last eight years, bringing the total loss to $2.9 billion.
This comes against the backdrop of calls by stakeholders in Nigeria to adopt Agroecology to help the country save money and export good and acceptable agricultural produce.
The stakeholders stated this in a communique issued at the end of a stakeholders meeting on agroecology and climate justice as well as the official launch of the Strategic Partnership for Agroecology and Climate Justice in West Africa (SPAC) West Africa.
The project was organised by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and ActionAid Nigeria, yesterday, in Abuja. The stakeholders include the House Committee on Agriculture Production and Services, Action Aid Nigeria, Small scale Women Farmers Organisation of Nigeria (SWOFON), All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN) and the Nigeria Agribusiness (NABG).
Others are the Women Environment Programme (WEP), the National Agency for Great Green Wall and the agricultural development programme managers (ADPs) from 36 states of the Federation and the FCT.
While emphasising the need to embrace agroecology, they maintained that although only 25per cent of chemical pesticides are used by developing countries like Nigeria, the region experienced 99 per cent of deaths from chemical pesticides. They added that recent research by the World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that 385 million farmers were victims of acute poisoning in 2019, with of them being from Asia and Africa.
They further noted that 75 per cent of smallholder women farmers surveyed in 2022 experienced some form of health challenges attributed to pesticide use.
In light of this, the communique stakeholders called on the political leaders to scale up budgets to agroecology and extension services.
Joke Falaju | The Guardian