Commissioner Promises To Empower Women Through Agriculture, Alleviate Poverty

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By Sylvia Akpan, Government House Correspondent

Cross River State Commissioner for Women Affairs, Hon. Edema Irom, says the State will use agriculture as one of its springboards to empower women as part of deliberate measures to alleviate poverty.

The Commissioner disclosed this during the 2023 Apiapum New Yam Festivals, held at Apiapum, Obubra Local Government Area over the weekend.

She stressed the huge potential that abounds in agriculture if fully harnessed is capable of liberating Cross River from over-dependence on Federal Allocation and transforming the socio-economic landscape of the State.

According to the Commissioner: “Given our comparative advantage as an agrarian State, Governor Bassey Otu, has already put machinery in motion to mobilize resources to modernize agriculture and make farming more attractive for better revenue earnings to both the farmers and government.”

While describing yam festivals as a veritable platform for camaraderie, family bond, and community unity, Irom assured the women who constitute bulk farmers in the area that in no distant time they will begin to derive better gain in their daily toils through improved yield as Governor Otu-led government will soon supply them with improved seedlings and tubers as part of palliative initiative.

She advised the women in the State to form themselves into cooperative unions so as to enable them access government-funded facilities for increased yield.

She posited that “Senator Bassey placed a high premium on agriculture with the introduction of high breed seedlings and tubers that will bring better yields, reduce harvest time, and give our women more money; of course once a woman is empowered, the household will be touched for better and more decent livelihood.”

“Government will leverage on platforms like this and other social gatherings of women to educate them on the need to venture into active agriculture and empower them with improved seedlings and tubers for maximum economic gains.”

Meanwhile, the Commissioner for Commerce Mrs. Abigail Duke, commended the people of Apiapum for organizing such a colorful event with a display of rare cultural insignias of the community and Obubra at large and urged them to remain united for meaningful development to attract to the area.

The clan head of Apiapum, His Royal Highness, Ovarr Robert Mbina Ajom lll, who was elated by the mere presence of government functionaries at the event courtesy of her daughter and Commissioner for Women Affairs, Hon. Edema Irom, lauded everyone who came to grace the occasion and the organizers for a successful host.

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