Engr. Abiodun Sunny, the National Project Coordinator for the Federal Government of Nigeria Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), assisted Livelihood Improvement Family Enterprises-Niger Delta (LIFE-ND) project in the Niger Delta on Monday began an unscheduled working visit to the Abia State LIFE-ND project office in Umuahia.
According to Engr. Abiodun, they are on appraisal mission on the one year-old LIFE-ND projects in Abia state.
His words: “Our mission is to get first hand information in the field so as to dissect issues and know where possibilities and negativities exist so as to support the project as far as Abia State is concerned.”
The visiting supervisors were taking to field to assertain the level of work and input by Abia State LIFE-ND.
After the field tour on the first day of visit, Engr. Abiodun gave his words: “we are impressed with what we saw on the field, the project just took off, and we should have one or two challenges and issues. That is basically the essence of the visit, to see how we can support the state.
“It’s quite an impressive visit and we are impressed with what we saw on the field, I will be in a better position to rate the state after I must have complete my mission. But what I have seen is satisfactory enough” he added.
Engr. Abiodun however spotted the challenges in the project in Abia LIFE-ND which is said to be lack of massive land for agricultural activities.
He also pointed out that land availability is much dependent on in Agriculture.
His words: “And when you look at the land tenure system within Abia State, especially from the gender perspective, it’s a major challenge, it is necessary we tackle the challenges buy involving female farmers, letting them have access to land so that they can practice substainable Agriculture.”
While answering questions from newsmen on how soon the incubatees(trained farmers) of the project will be equiped, Engr. Abiodun said “we have a process for putting things in place and we want to ensure that whatever is out is sustainable.
‘Ultimately, since the state has provided this facilities, it’s our responsibility to support the state in having finances and the technical know-how to provide these things substainably.”
Engr. Abiodun also disclosed that the machinery is already in place to support all the necessary requirements to equip the incubatees. He also assured that as soon as the incubatees graduates from their training sites, they will move into their own equiped facility.
Also in contact buy newsmen was Dr. Uchenna Rowland Onyeizu, the project co-coordinator, Abia LIFE-ND. He revealed that it was actually an unscheduled visit.
In his words: ” We were told that it’s an unscheduled visit so that they can catch us unaware and also to see it as it is. We were informed that’s what the visit, was for.
“So far so good, we visited some places as we divided ourselves into different groups, coincidentally the national office already planned the schedule and we just aligned to it.”
Candidreporters.com also discovered that 60 percent of the community scheduled for visit was already covered on the day-two of the working visit.
Questioning the surprise visit, Dr. Uchenna however added that he saw the supprise visit as supportive because it has help in exposing Abia LIFE-ND challenges to the national body.
He also maintained that Abia LIFE-ND has been hard working,
but he declined rating the performance of himself and his team when questioned to do so.
“His word: Am proud to say that so far so good, we have done well, in development spector like this, things are planned, as we get the resources, we have been doing it as planned, that’s why we have made the much success we have.
” We are not in a competition but we are out to ensure that peoples economy is revived across the communities we are carrying out our implementation.”
“So far we have been able to accommodate the unscheduled visit.” Dr. Uchenna added.
The visit is scheduled to last for three days after which the national supervisors of the project will give their verdicts and also highlight area of assistance.