AN advocacy has been made for the allocation of at least 10 per cent of the annual Budget by governments at all levels in the country to the agricultural sector in order to promote food sufficiency and security.
The advocacy was made by the Bauchi State chapter of Smallholders Women Farmers of Nigeria (SWOFON) through its State Chairperson, Hajiya Marka Abass while speaking on Tuesday during the 2018 annual women farmers forum with theme, ‘Zero hunger, to end hunger and malnutrition’ , organised by a Bauchi based NGO, FAHIMTA Women and Youth Development Initiative in collaboration with ActionAid Nigeria, held at the Joly Guest-inn, Bauchi.
Marka Abbass said that Smallholder Women farmers who constitute between 60-80 per cent of Nigeria’s agricultural labour force are faced with poor access to land, lack of access to government services such as credit, inputs, training and crop insurance thereby limiting their output.
She advocated that: “The budget process should be open and participatory for smallholder women farmers to be included in the planning process especially in the area of agriculture.”
“Easy access to credit at single digit interest rate should be provided for smallholder women farmers, removing conditions that required collateral and guarantors, thereby making the credit schemes gender friendly,” She further advocated.
In her presentation on the state of Malnutrition worldwide, the Guest Speaker, Dr Rose Idi said that approximately 3.1 million children die every year due to undernutrition, adding that hunger and undernutrition contribute to more than half of global child deaths.
She said that undernutrition causes severe wasting of 52 million children worldwide and constitute nearly 45 per cent death in children under the age of five years.