Mr Daniel Jacob, the Director, Agricultural Services, Kaduna State Agricultural Development Project (KADP), has expressed concern over the inadequate ratio of extension workers to farmers in the state.
Jacob spoke at a send-off reception organised in honour of 24 retired members of staff of the KADP Maigana zone held at Maigana in Soba Local Government Area on Tuesday.
He noted that the ratio of extension workers to farmers in the state used to be 1:1,500 and expressed regret that the current ratio stood at 1 : 3,240.
Jacob described the current situation as “grossly inadequate and highly disturbing” considering the World Bank’s standard which is between 1 : 800 and 1 : 1,000.
The director also appealed to local governments in the state to encourage their staff to be attend KADP monthly meeting and training.
In her speech, Prof. Afiniki Zarafi of the Department of Crop Protection, Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria, noted that d extension workers acted as bridges between researchers and farmers.
She said extension workers were critical as they offer useful services to promote agricultural production in the country.
“Research would have been of no use if extension workers are no more. Research outcomes from universities and other research institutes will just be a waste,” Zarafi said.
The KADP Programme Manger, Dr Abdulkadir Kasim, congratulated the retirees for leaving the job honourably and urged the serving staff to follow their footsteps to end well.
Kasim, who was represented by Alhaji Salisu Uba, KADP’s Director of Administration said : “It is a wonderful privilege to have served Kaduna State for 35 years or attain the age of 60 in life.”
Tthe programme manager congratulated, noting that they had contributed immensely to the development of agriculture in Maigana zone in particular, and the state in general.
He advised those in active service to be disciplined, dedicated and committed to duty to be able to contribute their quota in the economy.
Earlier, the Zonal Manager, KADP, Maigana zone, Alhaji Kabiru Ibrahim, said the send-off was organised to appreciate the enormous contributions of the retirees to agricultural development in the state.
Ibrahim appealed to the entire members of staff to sustain the support and cooperation of government in the implementation of policies and programmes.
Source: News Agency of Nigeria(NAN)