IFAD Country Office commends Abia Govt, advocates state, NDDC counterpart funding

By Raymond Benson
The Gender, Youth and Nutrition Specialist for IFAD Country Programme Advisory Team (CPAT), Mrs Saudatu Zahradeen, has lauded the effort of the Governor of Abia State, Dr Alex Otti, for giving enabling environment for operations of Liveihood Improvement Family Enterprises, Niger Delta (LIFE-ND) Project in the state.
 Zahradeen was in the state to strengthen the operations of the Project’s rural institutions, the Commodities Apex Development Associations (CADA), which is an umbrella of agribusiness enterprise groups for the beneficiaries of rice, poultry, cassava production, oil palm processing, including their various value chains.


Mrs Saudatu Zahradeen, Gender, Youth and Nutrition Specialist for IFAD Country Programme Advisory Team.
 Zahradeen while commending the State Government, solicited for counterpart funding by the Governor Otti’s administration and Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
“We are still looking out for counterpart funding from the state and NDDC to also support this region of Niger Delta so that male, female youths and Persons With Disabilities will be included,” she said.
 Zahradeen who visited Obingwaobi, Isialangwa North and Ohia Community in Umuahia South, expressed delight in the operations of CADA, especially in the transfer of knowledge between peer groups in various communities and beyond the state.
She said:”These CADAs are working vigorously well.
“One of the CADA members in Isialangwa has transferred knowledge to other communities and even to Enugu State groups.
 “One of things IFAD utilises is the transfer of knowledge between farmers and this has set in.”
The LIFE-ND Rural Institution, Youth and Gender Coordinator, Dr Clement Uwem who was also in the state for the strengthening and training of CADA members, commended the achievement of Obingwaobi CADA for employing guards to secure the cassava processing mill in the community.


Dr Clement Uwem, LIFE-ND Rural Institution, Youth and Gender Coordinator.
“We were impressed to hear a lot of achievements from the CADA.
The cassava processing mill has two security men employed by CADA and paid salaries for the past three months.
 This is an additional measure and employment that will boot rural economy on sustainable basis,” he said.
 Uwem promised to create and engage members in Gender Action Learning System, GALS, a vision route map that would assist individuals to achieve a purpose in life.
The Abia LIFE-ND Rural Institution, Youth, Gender Officer, Deacon Anthony Nwaobilor promised to expand the outreach beyond the 100 selected communities in the state.
Similarly, the Chairperson of Abia LIFE-ND Women in Agriculture Network, Mrs Rose Nwachukwu, who participated in the training with her executive,  enjoined her members to embrace the training for the benefit of the the Niger Delta region.
IFAD-LIFE-ND team with the executive of the Commodity Apex Development Association (CADA).


Apart from LIFE-ND, IFAD has similar active projects like VCDP in Northern, Central and South East of Nigeria.
Others include Special Agro Processing Zone (SAPZ) in the North and South West, including the currently launched the Value Chain North comprising eight states of the North East and North West.