Chief Azeez Maboreje, Southwest Farmers’ Ambassador, has commended Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo state for appointing a farmer as the state’s Commissioner of Agriculture.
Chief Maboreje, who gave this commendation while speaking with our correspondent in Ibadan during an interview noted that the appointment of someone who owns a farm as the state’s Commissioner of Agriculture was a partial fulfilment of Governor Makinde’s promise.
He said, “Governor Seyi Makinde promised us during the farmers’ debate we had before the governorship election, which was the first of its kind in the history of Africa, that he was going to appoint a member of farmers’ association as a commissioner, we thank God that the governor partially fulfilled that promise because I have done my findings and found out that the governor’s appointee as the commissioner for Agriculture is a technocrat and has a farm”.
The South West Farmers Ambassador also explained that the All Progressive Congress (APC) governorship candidate in this year’s election, Chief Bayo Adelabu, lost to Governor Makinde because he shunned the farmers’ debate.
Chief Maboreje maintained that over 70 per cent of farmers in Oyo state voted for Makinde during the March election because they were pleased with his presentations and promises during the debate.
He added that “During the farmer’s debate that we held before the last elections, the second popular candidate after Seyi Makinde refused to come to the debate and I told the other candidates present as a farmer’s ambassador that it was only one of you here that would win the election”.
The Farmers’ Ambassador, however, used the opportunity to appeal to Governor Makinde’s administration to promote agriculture in Oyo state by implementing farmer-friendly programmes and policies.
Maboreje claimed that 60 per cent of agricultural produces waste on the farm due to bad roads connecting farm settlement to where the produces can be sold to the consumers, as most of these villages lack good motorable roads to bring their goods out of the farm.
His words: “I have been to many farm settlements in Oyo State, the roads are so bad which is one of the major problems we are facing as farmers. When you hire a vehicle to come and help you to carry your farm produces from the farm to the town, and the vehicle uses 3 to 4 days before it could be able to get to the town, tell me if such driver will answer you next time you call him for such business”.
“Farmers did not benefit anything from the past administration and I can say it all happened like that because the past administration appointed a lawyer as the Commissioner of Agriculture. So, what do you expect from such an appointment?
Speaking on what Oyo state could derive from agriculture, Maboreje noted that the state is blessed with a vast landmass, which can enable the state to eradicate hunger and create up to 20,000 job opportunities for the youths.