Former Nigerian President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan has called on African governments to initiate and implement a mechanism that would attract increased funding to agriculture in the face of growing challenges of climate change and other vulnerabilities to agriculture in the continent.
Jonathan, in his keynote presented on the opening day of the ongoing African Conference on Agricultural Technology (ACAT) holding in Nairobi, Kenya also extended the call to the political leadership on the continent, development partners, donors and the organized private sector to join hands with AATF to build an Africa where agricultural productivity would not be hindered by any limitations.
Speaking in his capacity as AATF’s Goodwill Ambassador, Jonathan said, “My role as AATF Goodwill Ambassador gives me the opportunity to preach the gospel of sustainable agriculture where technologies play a crucial role.
“In my capacity as AATF Ambassador, let me invite the political leadership on the continent, development partners, donors and the organized private sector to join hands with us at AATF to build an Africa of our dreams where agricultural productivity would not be hindered by any limitations and especially an African where no one goes to bed hungry.”
He said, “Enhancing agricultural productivity on the continent is possible and doable. We have examples working right here and from other continents to learn from. Improving and positioning agriculture as the engine room for Africa’s growth is not an option but our only choice to creating jobs, improving livelihoods, and ensuring a food and nutritionally secure Africa.”
In conclusion, he said, “If agriculture continues to account for over 35% GDP and is responsible for the livelihoods of over 50% of the population in many African countries, it would be foolhardy to disinvest in the sector at this critical point on our shared economic journeys.”
ACAT, the first of its kind in Africa, brings together a dynamic community of agricultural researchers, policymakers, industry leaders, and innovators to exchange ideas, share best practices, and explore innovative solutions that can enhance agricultural productivity in Africa.
Themed “Agricultural Resilience through Innovation,” the conference focuses on the centrality of science, technology, and innovation (STI) in fostering agricultural transformation on the continent.