Partners in Akwa Ibom Charged On Impact, Standards
Following an impressive campaign in pushing for the adoption of vitamin A cassava in the state, Akwa Ibom State HarvestPlus partners have been urged to continue with the good work, ensure impact of the project spreads to neighbouring states and promote standardization.
This was the resolution of the country office’s meeting with the Akwa Ibom State partners held last month to review activities in the past year and strategies for greater impact in the coming year.
HarvestPlus’ Country Manager, Dr. Paul Ilona, charged the partners to ensure that their efforts cause the desired change in agricultural practices, nutrition and enterprise in the state, noting that much as there was need to expand to other states, there was need to further strengthen relations among partners in the state too.
“Everybody needs to work together. If we don’t do so, we would run into serious problems. The dream at the outset in 2010 is that, by now, partners in the state would have started working with other states. We are committed to that and we hope that the partners would get there soon,” he said.
Emphasising the need for up-to-date, real time data to track progress in the state, he said “we need real time data so as to be able to track and reach out to people beyond our domain, so as to effectively scale out the project.”
The Director of Extension in the Akwa Ibom State Agricultural Development Project (AKADEP), Emmanuel Akpan, said the partners are committed to maintaining the high pace with which they have conducted their activities.
He delighted in the fact that the United Kingdom’s Department of International Development (DFID) Market Development in the Niger Delta (MADE) in partnership with HarvestPlus Nigeria held training on techniques for using vitamin A cassava for women in pastries business.
“We are delighted that, apart from Oyo State, we score high in HarvestPlus activities. We are hoping that we would have more of such trainings in future.”
Akwa Ibom State University (AKSU) partner and cassava enterprise development specialist, Dr. Edna Akpan said partners in the state were expanding their network and are making in-roads in government circles, noting that healthy relations have been established with the state government to mainstream vitamin A cassava into the state’s programmes.