The Federal Government has inaugurated 23 governing boards of agricultural research institutes and colleges of agriculture under the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
Inaugurating the boards in Abuja on Friday, the Minister of State for Agriculture, Heineken Lokpobiri, charged the board members to make accountability their watchwords.
He said that the present administration has zero tolerance for corruption.
Mr Lokpobiri said research institutes and colleges of agriculture had a vital role in the development of new technologies, input, storage and distribution techniques for improved yields and reduction in post harvest losses.
According to him, while Nigeria has achieved significant results in its bid to grow the sector, we still have a lot of work to do.
“I want you to regard your new appointments as a clarion call to service and be partners in progress.
“It requires your competency and wealth of experience to support the institutions you are appointed into, giving strategic direction and ensuring attainment of the goals they are set to deliver.
“Note that your role is non-executive and part-time.
“Permit me to remind you that President Muhammadu Buhari is devoted to ensuring positive change in the lives of our people and improvement in their standard of living.
“Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has the responsibility of developing agriculture, please be change agents,” the minister appealed.
Speaking on behalf of the board members, Adetunji Ajagbe, chairman of the board of Agricultural Research Council of Nigeria, ARCN, promised prompt service to transform the agriculture sector.
According to him, we will not disappoint the country and ourselves.
The inaugurated boards are the National Cereals Research Institute, Badeggi, Nigerian Agricultural Insurance Corporation, NAIC, National Root Crops Research Institute, Cocoa Research Institute of Nigeria among others.