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Oyo Lawmaker, Akintayo Urges Makinde To Resuscitate Farming Practice In Schools

Lawmaker representing, Oluyole State Constituency in the Oyo State House of Assembly, Hon. Waheed Akintayo (Ilumoka) has appealed to Governor Seyi Makinde through the State Ministry of Education to reintroduce the practice of school gardens in both Government and private schools/institutions across Oyo State as a means of boosting food security in the State.

Hon. Waheed Akintayo Ilumoka made the appeal shortly after presenting a motion on the floor of the House on the need to embrace the resuscitation of school gardens in both public and private schools and institutions in Oyo State

He noted that the cultivation of school gardens was the priority of Government, schools management and the entire students in the past as large potions of school lands were used to cultivate various crops such as yam, cassava, maize, vegetables and beans.

The Lawmaker who enjoined the State Government to provide necessary logistics and support for the reintroduction and sustenance of school gardens to enhance this practice, advocated a day to be set aside each week in schools for agricultural practicals on the school farms.

This, he added would encourage the students to take interest in farming while same will be replicated in each household where gardens will be cultivated for domestic consumption.

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“In the past, every school used to have large portions of land for cultivation. The students had spaces allocated for them to plant a particular type of crop which would be effectively monitored by teachers and Agric prefects. In those days, each school had a designated day within the school hours for agric practicals which would enable all students to assemble and work on the school Gardens. When matured, the crops would be sold, given out to teachers or staff or sold to the local markets as source of IGR for the school. It will interest Hon. Colleagues to note that some of the proceeds from the sales of the farm produce from the school gardens were usually used for purchase of some instructional materals for Schools, equipped libraries with books, bought laboratory equipment, and at times used for celebration of end of the year party for teachers and students.

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“There is no doubting the fact that, the importance of school gardens is provision of foods and inculcation of agricultural practices in students. Aware that in the past two (2) decades, the practice and habit of cultivation of school gardens by public and private schools in Oyo state had gone into extinction. The most dishearting aspect of it is that most students of primary and secondary schools nowadays do not have simple agricultural knowledge of farming. Some have the orientation or mindset that yams for instance are plucked from trees. This is unfortunate.”

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“Concern that, in addressing the food shortage that has plunged the country and states into famine and food crisis in the recent times, It is advisable for Government and other Stakeholders in the education sector in both public/private primary and secondary schools as well as other educational institutions to go back to the drawing board by reintroducing and embracing the practice of school gardens through cultivation of different Agricultural crops. By so doing, It is believe that each household will definitely imbibe the spirit of having House garden to cultivate crops for domestic consumption.”

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