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Showing posts with label Director. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Director. Show all posts

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

GAIN Executive Director, Haddad, emerges World Food Prize winner - NaijaAgroNet

The Executive Director of the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN), Dr. Lawrence Haddad, alongside Dr. David Nabarro, former special adviser to the UN Secretary General, were jointly named as winners of the 2018 World Food Prize, reports NaijaAgroNet.

Disclosing this the award Ambassador Quinn, World Food Prize President cited the recipients for their “extraordinary intellectual and policy leadership in bringing maternal and child nutrition to the forefront of the global food security agenda and thereby significantly reducing childhood stunting”

The Prize was founded in 1986 by Nobel Peace Prize winner Dr. Norman E. Borlaug and is the foremost international award recognizing the achievements of individuals who have advanced human development by improving the quality, quantity or availability of food in the world.

An economist, Lawrence Haddad has been working to advance nutrition and food security for three decades, starting with field work in the Philippines on the impacts of the commercialisation of agriculture on nutrition status. He taught at the University of Warwick for 3 years, was a researcher at the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) where he was the Director of the Food Consumption and Nutrition Division, and he directed the UK’s world-leading Institute for Development Studies (IDS). In 2014 he was a founding co-chair of the Global Nutrition Report and was a principal author of the Report for its first three years. 

In his words, “I am honoured to receive this award, which has always focused on the critical and urgent issues of the time. For our generation, I believe the issue is not only how to feed the world, but how to nourish it sustainably. Six of the top 10 risk factors for the global burden of disease are related to poor diet. This is not surprising because more than 1 in 3 people on the planet eat too little food, too little food of the right type or too much food of the wrong type. Were he here today I am sure Dr. Borlaug would have been at the forefront of the fight to create sustainable food systems capable of addressing all forms of malnutrition – from wasting and stunting to overweight and obesity”.

Lawrence Haddad joined GAIN in 2016, which, under his leadership, has focused on making nutritious and safe foods more available, affordable and desirable for those most in need. 

In his reaction to the news, GAIN Nigeria Country Director, Dr Michael Ojo said "Dr. Haddad has deeply challenged us through his consistent, passionate and rigorous use of data and evidence to compel leaders in countries across the world to invest in nutrition, Nigeria inclusive. Under Lawrence’s leadership, GAIN is now at the forefront of action to improve the quality of diets by making nutritious foods more affordable accessible and desirable for everyone.  This is central to the partnership work we are supporting in Nigeria.  By honouring Lawrence, the Prize is endorsing this broad definition of food security - encouraging to us not only feed the world, but nourish it”.

This Prize is shared with Dr David Nabarro and in his reaction, Dr Haddad said “On behalf of everyone at GAIN, I would like to congratulate David and say how honoured I am to share this award with him. His achievement turning Scaling up Nutrition (SUN) into a movement changed the nutrition landscape forever.  He set the template: be inclusive and yet decisive, marry science with action; facilitate engagement of all stakeholders--even when inconvenient; and champion nutrition at all levels, from the grassroots front line worker to the highest levels of government and everything in-between”

Also reacting to the news, Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, said: “Like Dr. Norman Borlaug before them, Drs. Haddad and Nabarro have dedicated their careers to reducing hunger and malnutrition. Their work has deepened our understanding of nutrition’s impact not only on individual health, but on human capital and economic growth – compelling leaders in countries across the world to invest in evidence-based solutions”.

The formal presentation of the World Food Prize takes place in Des Moines in October 2018.

Isaac Oyimah/GEE

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Pix: Dr. Lawrence Haddad

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Women entrepreneurs hold ace for successful SDGs – Fotabong

The Director of Programmes at the NEPAD Agency, Mrs Estherine Lisinge-Fotabong, has said that women entrepreneurs hold the ace for successful achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), reports NaijaAgroNet.

In a key keynote at the 2nd Conference for Women in Agribusiness Durban, South Africa, Mrs Fotabong noted that in every region of the world, more and more women are seeking economic opportunity and self- determination through enterprise creation. 

The growth of women’s entrepreneurship, she said, is frequently cited on an anecdotal basis, and is increasingly covered and commented upon in the business media.

She pointed out that expectation is that by 2018, an estimated 9.72 million small, business-related jobs would be created and female entrepreneurs would contribute more than 50 per cent in this job creation space. 

Statistically, she said, nature proves that women are becoming more comfortable in assuming leadership position and creating job opportunities on a large-scale1.

“Women starting up in business tend to provide a more immediate contribution to the economy: Around one in five women come into self-employment from unemployment compared with around one in fifteen for men,” she said.

Mrs. Fotabong emphasized that women have power to contribute more to African economies, asserting, “Entrepreneurship is critical to the success of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the inter-governmentally agreed set of targets for international development leading up to 2030.”

The MEC for the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development in KwaZulu-Natal, Mr. Cyril Xaba said that the heart of the strategy for agrarian transformation is the development of the small-scale farmer.

. “If the statistics are examined more closely, it actually means unleashing the potential of women in agriculture,” he said.

Chairperson, Agribusiness Development Agency, Dr. Martha Mbatha said that women are still the major producers of food in Africa; producing between 60 to 80 percent of the food output. 

She contended that it is important to take heed of women’s voices in agribusiness, whose humility is at times mistaken for ignorance.

Corraborating Dr. Martha, the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) Representative for South Africa Dr Tobias Takavarasha, reiterated that women play an indispensable role in agriculture and food security. 

Dr Takavarasha further stated that partnerships in maximising women’s potential in agribusiness entrepreneurship remain critical. Therefore, women who excel in the agrarian sector need to be given due recognition.

NaijaAgroNet further reports that a press statement endorsed by Mwanja Ng’anjo and Teko Nklapo both of NEPAD agency notes that the exhibition at the conference provided female exhibitors the space to showcase their value-add agricultural products. About 200 participants at the conference had the opportunity to also dialogue and share their experiences in agribusiness. 

In addition, there is capacity building training provided in the area of agribusiness processes.

 +Remmy +ITRealms DSA +NEPAD Agency 

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pix: NEPAD PICD Director, Mrs Estherine Fotabong, with Mr Cyril Xaba [on her left] MEC of Agriculture & Rural Development in KwaZulu-Natal, visiting one of the stands at the conference exhibition

Friday, August 14, 2015

Agriculture, food security, prudent management vital in SADC region

The Director of Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources at the Southern African Development Community ( SADC), Ms Margaret Nyirenda, said agriculture, food security and prudent management of natural resources are vital in SADC region, NaijaAgroNet reports.

She said that food production in most parts of the region was hampered by unfavourable climatic conditions, increase in population, poor health and sanitation, adding that SADC is facing a cereal deficit of over six million tonnes emanating from the poor rainfall and floods that befell the region in the 2014/2015 season.

Nyirenda was addressing the 35th Ordinary Summit of Heads of States and Government in Gaborone. She said the 2014/2015 rainfall season was poor in most parts of the region with prolonged dry spells in Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa, southern Angola and Zimbabwe,  gathered NaijaAgroNet.

She added that Madagascar, Malawi and Mozambique experienced both floods and prolonged dry spells and that the poor rainfall led to an unsatisfactory regional food security situation for the 2015/2016 year.

Ms Nyirenda, NaijaAgroNet learnt,  said the deficit of 6.33 million tonnes of cereal include the five most consumed cereals in the region such as maize, wheat, rice, millet and sorghum compared to a surplus of 1.21 million tonnes in the 2014/15 year .

She said the regional cereal availability for the 2015/16 was estimated at 40.23 million tonnes representing a drop of 22 per cent from 45.62 million tonnes last year. Ms Nyirenda added that the requirement for the region this year was estimated at 32.93 million tonnes, reflecting an overall maize deficit of 1.20 million tonnes.

Cyriacus Nnaji/GEE/ED,OPs
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Pix: Ms Margaret Nyirenda,

Friday, July 31, 2015

Makinde advocates monitoring of biotech development in Africa


The Director, African Biotech Network of Expertise (ABNE), Professor Diran Makinde, has posited that African countries should have reliable systems to monitor developments in biotechnology to ensure successes in health, food security, biodiversity and trade, NaijaAgroNet reports.

The Dr. Makinde said that in the face of opposition and activism, evidence based decisions is germane to sustain the tempo in public awareness on the safety of  Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) adding that what Africa needs to do is monitor local seed companies so that seeds are not adulterated.

He took this position at the three-day biotechnology short course organized by the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) agency Africa Biosafety Network of Expertise in collaboration with University of Ghana (UG) Legon, and Michigan State University (MSU).

The course, NaijaAgroNet gathered, seeks to provide a platform that would empower key stakeholders within the Biosafety systems in Ghana and Nigeria with current information on safe management of modern biotechnology to enable them effectively support regulatory process.

Expert pointed out that with 65 per cent of Africa's labour workforce employed by agriculture coupled with aging farmers, climate change, drought and famine and the youth shunning agriculture, Biotech stands to optimize productivity and contribute to food, feed and fiber security.

NaijaAgroNet further reports that Biotechnology is the use of living organisms to produce a product or service such as tools of tissue culture, molecular characterization for identification purposes in plant breeding, diagnostics, fermentation and genetic engineering.

Cyriacus Nnaji/GEE

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Sunday, March 30, 2014

IPCC report highlights threats of climate change to people says Toulmin

The Director of the International Institute for Environment and Development, Dr Camilla Toulmin, has commended the IPCC latest report on climate change, saying it exposes threats to people and prosperity, reports NaijaAgroNet.

“The new IPCC report highlights the threats climate change poses to people’s peace and prosperity,” he said in a press statement made available to NaijaAgroNet.

According to Dr. Toulmin, it shows that countries, communities and companies must act fast to adapt to the changing climate, but it also shows too that there are limits to adaptation and this drives home the urgency of global action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Toulmin told NaijaAgroNet that its high-time for unprecedented global solidarity and cooperation.

“Now is the opportunity for true leaders to shine. Some of the world’s least developed countries are already forging ahead,” Toulmin said.

For Dr. Toulmin, Ethiopia has committed to carbon-neutral development. Bangladesh has invested US$10 billion of its own money to adapt to extreme climatic events.

Just as Nepal is the first country to develop adaptation plans at the community level, insisting “It is time for the richer countries to pull their weight and do the right thing, by investing at home and abroad in actions that can reduce emissions and protect people and property from danger.”

The climate, Dr. Toulmin reminded that though the world is in this together and that shows “we can only solve this problem as a united international community.

Isaac Oyimah/GEE
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Sunday, November 10, 2013

'Mobile phones indispensable to smallholder farmers transformation'


Director, Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation, Mr. Michael Hailu has described Information and communication technology (ICT) tools as an indispensable to the transformation of small holder farmers reports NaijaAgroNet.

He made this known to NaijaAgroNet, at a recent conference on ICTs in agriculture in Kigali, Rwanda, which ended at the weekend.

Pan Africa News Agency (PANA) reports that the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA) is a joint ACP-EU institution active in agricultural and rural development in ACP countries, with the mission to advance food and nutritional security, increase prosperity and encourage sound natural resource management in ACP countries.

Hailu was quoted as saying that on this continent, 65 per cent of the workforce is employed in agriculture and the sector generates 32 per cent of Gross domestic products - GDP. Smallholder farmers, mostly women, produce 80 per cent of Africa’s food,

African countries, he said, spend up to US$ 50 billion a year on food imports, stressing that with abundant land, water and cheap labour, there is no good reason why Africa should import so much food.

“Yet there’s good reason to be optimistic. After years of neglect, governments and the private sector are increasing investments in agriculture,' Hailu said.

To achieve its full potential, he posited that smallholder agriculture must be transformed from a subsistence activity to a profitable, sustainable business and ICTs play a vital role in this transformation.

"They provide timely advice and information. They help farmers increase productivity. They make markets more efficient. And they increase incomes," he said.

Emphasising that in 2000, there were just 16.5 million mobile subscriptions in Africa, 13 years later, there are over 650 million.

"Indeed, the number of people on the continent with access to mobile phones exceeds the number with access to clean water, electricity or a bank account” he said.

NaijaAgroNet recalls that ICT4Ag held under the theme 'The Digital Springboard for Inclusive Agriculture´ Conference, was hosted by CTA, the Rwandan Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources (MINAGRI) as well as the Ministry of Youth and ICTs (MYICT).

Isaac Oyimah with agency reports/GEE
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Pix: Director, Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation, Mr. Michael Hailu

Thursday, October 3, 2013

CTA boss commends CAADP, seeks alliance for smallholder farmers

Remmy Nweke/NaijaAgroNet:

The Director, Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA), Mr Michael Hailu, has commended the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP), just as he seeks collaboration to uplift the small holder farmers.

Hailu in his remarks as gathered by NaijaAgroNet at the Brussels Development Briefing in Belgium, which focused on 10 years of CAADP, reiterated the fact that by adopting CAADP 10 years ago, African Heads of State had put agriculture at the centre of the development agenda.

The CTA boss also emphasised that CTA and NEPAD's collaboration in a number of areas that include support for smallholder farmers, will lead to positive results in growing agriculture as a key driver for broad-based social and economic growth.

In addition, Mr Steve Wiggins from the Overseas Development Institute maintained that food production in Africa is not as bad as it is made out to be. Mr Wiggins highlighted the example of agricultural growth in West Africa, at an average of 4 per cent a year in the last thirty years as surpassing a number of regions in the world, including some parts of Asia and South America.

Mr Ousmane Badiane, Director for Africa at the International Food Policy Research Institute, concluded his presentation by maintaining that, "Agricultural growth is not just growth in the sector alone, but also results in economic growth."  Some of the other conclusions of the Briefing in Brussels included the need to create an enabling environment for investment and innovation; and investing in rural public goods, amongst others.

NaijaAgroNet recalls that the 33rd Brussels Briefing was hosted by CTA, the European Commission, the African, Carribean and Pacific Group of States Secretariat and Concord in partnership with NEPAD, consisted of policy deliberations that also brought out proven successes and best practices in African agriculture.

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