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Monday, July 15, 2024

Seasonal Climate Predictions: HEDA, NiMet tutor Nigerian farmers, extension workers

The Human and Environmental Development Agenda (HEDA Resource Centre), in partnership with the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMet) and supported by Oxfam through the African Activists for Climate Justice (AACJ) project, has launched an extensive workshop series to educate small-scale Nigerian farmers, extension workers, and staff of Agricultural Development Programmes (ADP) across 10 states.

Participants at one of the training workshops

The workshop series, which was held in Kwara, Oyo, Ogun, Benue, Adamawa, Plateau, Nasarawa, Niger, Ekiti, and Osun states, provided essential training on climate predictions and crop weather calendars to over 500 participants.

Sulaimon Arigbabu, the Executive Secretary of HEDA, expressed enthusiasm about the collaboration, stating, “We are thrilled to work with NiMet and our partner Oxfam under the AACJ project to deliver this critical training. We have engaged participants from all local governments across the ten states to ensure widespread dissemination of this valuable information.”

He added, “The primary objective of the workshop was to equip small-scale farmers, extension workers, and ADP staff with crucial information for the upcoming farming season. Participants benefited from training on utilising downscaled Seasonal Climate Predictions (SCP) and Crop Weather Calendars.”

Significantly, the growing seasons for each state are as follows: Nasarawa: April 30 to October 27 (203 days); Kwara: April 30 to October 25 (180 days); Oyo: April 10 to November 29 (231 days); Benue: April 24 to November 1 (189 days); and Osun: April 10 to November 30 (233 days).

The predicted growing season in Niger State is from May 9 to November 8 (184 days); Ogun State is March 31 to December 1 (249 days); for Plateau, it is from May 19 to November 9 (186 days); Adamawa State’s length of the growing season is from April 21 to November 1 (193 days); and for Ekiti State, it is between April 13 and November 27 (227 days).

Arigbabu stated, “By providing access to climate predictions and crop weather calendars, we hope to improve agricultural practices and enhance the well-being of farming communities across the country.”

The workshops, organised by HEDA and NiMet, are said to reflect a longstanding collaboration aimed at ensuring farmers have access to NiMet’s seasonal climate predictions and crop weather calendars.

“This initiative strengthens the agricultural sector and supports farming communities through improved climate prediction and planning resources,” added Arigbabu.

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