SWOFON Laments Women Farmers’ Lack of Access to Agricultural Land

The Small Scale Women Farmers Organisation of Nigeria (SWOFON) has identified lack of access to agricultural land as a major challenge faced by women farmers in the country. Specifically, Hajiya Maryam Yakubu, a representative of SWOFON, Yobe branch, stated this at the inauguration of a multi stakeholders’ platform by a global NGO, ‘SYNERGOS’, to address issues affecting agriculture in Damaturu, Yobe State, on Wednesday. Yakubu explained that most of the farms are owned by men, noting that majority of the women lack the capacity to possess or rent farmlands, unless through inheritance. Also, another representative of Women in Agriculture in Yobe, Hajiya Aishatu Ali, decried women’s limited access to inputs such as seeds, fertilisers and chemicals. She said, “if women could have grants rather than loans, they would contribute immensely to the development of the agricultural sector in Nigeria.” Ali, therefore, appealed to the government, NGOs and other stakeholders to give special considerations and interventions to women in Agriculture. On his part, the Northeast Project Coordinator, SYNERGOS, Mr Muhammed Sheriff, explained that the aim of the multi stakeholder platform was to bring key stakeholders together to discuss issues affecting agriculture in the state. According to him, the development will enable stakeholders to put heads together and proffer solutions to the identified challenges, adding that the NGO was also in Yobe to implement a component of the Rural Resilience Activity Project in the state. Meanwhile, the Yobe State Agricultural Development Programme Manager, Alhaji Ali Kolo, lauded SYNERGOS and other partners for the inclusive nature of the programme, saying every relevant stakeholder was involved right from the planning to the implementation stage, which is one of the successes of the programme.

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