Obasanjo lampoons agric varsity mgt for low productivity

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Former President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, has expressed dissatisfaction with the management of Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi (FUAM), for not living up to its mandate of bringing out latest discoveries that could boost agricultural production.

Obasanjo, who made his feelings known, on Friday, in Makurdi, when he led members of the Zero Hunger Forum on a field visit to some Argo based institutions and industries in Benue State lamented that the institution was not researching enough which made it not to discover or make use of latest discoveries in agriculture.

He further stated that the school was not also commercialising the items that it had in order to boost its income positing that the purpose for establishing the school was already defeated.

While noting that the palm trees at the institution’s farm were outdated, Gen. Obasanjo said the school did not think it wise to replace them with the improved variety stressing that the industrial action embarked upon by the lecturers were over non payment of earned allowance was uncalled for.

Also reacting, Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State, directed the management of the institution to immediately uproot the old palm trees and replace them with improved variety to enable them improve on their income profile.

In a remark, former governor of Nasarawa State, Abdullahi Adamu, and Chairman, Senate Committee on Agriculture who was also on the team maintained that the institution had deviated from its core mandate of making researches that could usher in new developments in agriculture.

Adamu stressed that the mandate of the university also included embarking on agricultural activities that could enable it get revenue that it could be sustaining itself.

Earlier, Deputy Vice Chancellor, Prof. John Ayoade, had told Obasanjo and others that the palm trees at the school’s farm were harvested only once a year.

Ayoade revealed that the palm trees were not the current improved variety, pointing out that the school was yet to replace them with improved variety.

Highlight of the event was the commissioning of the newly renovated Schools of Nursing and Midwifery in Makurdi, visit to the Fertilizers Blending Plant and the Oracle farms both situated at the Industrial Layout, Mikap Nigeria Limited and Seraph Oil all in Makurdi.

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