The Annual LAPO Development Forum is an annual symposium that stimulates investigations into the nature and causes of poverty. The Forum provides a veritable platform for stakeholders to discuss and proffer pragmatic solutions to identified issues in poverty and development. Initiated in 1994 by the Founder of LAPO, Dr. Godwin Eseiwi Ehigiamusoe, the Forum has become a faculty of development in its own right. Over the years, the annual conferencing has stirred vibrant discourse on the development agenda in Nigeria and Africa with very realistic solutions canvassed by guest lecturers and conferees.
The theme of the first edition of the Annual LAPO Development Forum held in 1994 was “The Nigerian Economy and the Poor: 1984-1994”. Discussions and conclusions at this session reinforced our belief that sustainable approach to poverty alleviation must go beyond charity and directed at strengthening the income capacity of the poor. Subsequent editions of the Forum addressed pertinent issues.
His Excellency, Gen. (Dr) Yakubu Gowon, GCFR, former Head of State and Commander-In-Chief of the Armed Forces, Federal Republic of Nigeria chaired the 2015, 22nd edition of the LAPO Forum with the theme: Women Entrepreneurship Development: Issues, Opportunities and Approaches.
ACHIEVEMENTS OF THE ANNUAL LAPO DEVELOPMENT FORUM
The Annual LAPO Development Forum has over the years provided stakeholders the needed platform to interact and proffer realistic solutions to the crucial problem of poverty and under-development in Nigeria
Ideas generated from previous editions of the Forum have improved the programme focus and delivery methodology of development organizations including LAPO.
Key resolutions at Annual LAPO Development Forums have inputted into national poverty reduction programmes of various tiers of government.
THE 2016 LAPO ANNUAL DEVELOPMENT FORUM ISSUES OF CONCERN
Food insecurity is becoming a critical issue in Nigeria. Over the years, our agricultural development has been on a downward spiral. World Bank data reveals that about 90 percent of Nigeria’s agricultural output comes from inefficient small farms. Most farmers cannot even produce enough food to feed their own families. UNICEF statistics says that about 65 percent of our population is ‘food insecure’
This negative trend is attributable to genera apathy, the discovery and total reliance on crude oil; and the after effects of the civil war of the late 60’s. In addition to the local political problems, intensive agricultural research and delivery systems have been disappointingly low in Nigeria when compared to the strings of successes being recorded in some Asian and Latin American countries. Several government initiatives and programmes aimed at improving food production and security in Nigeria have failed to yield the desired result. Most of these programmes have served as conduit pipes for government officials to syphon public funds and stash them away in foreign countries. Various government agricultural programmes targeted at the poor farmers have not brought about the much trumpeted agricultural revolution. Clearly, Nigeria is at the brink of food crisis.
Food Security and Sustainable Agriculture in Nigeria: Challenges and Opportunities.
DATE: Tuesday, October 18, 2016
VENUE: Shehu Musa Yar’Adua International Conference Centre, Central Area, Abuja, Nigeria
REGISTRATION: 8:00am prompt.
TECHNICAL SESSION: 10.00am
EXHIBITIONS: All Day Long
This year, Former President Olusegun Obasanjo, GCFR, will lead discussions at the Forum as the Keynote Speaker. Dr. Nteranya Sanginga, the Director-General, International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) and Prof. Valentine Aletor, former Vice-Chancellor, Elizade University will speak on “Enhancing Youth Employment Through Agricultural Development” and “Agriculture, Women Empowerment and Food Security, respectively.
The Honourable Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh shall be Special Guest of Honour. Development partners, policy makers, academia, and leading civil society organizations shall make meaningful contributions with inputs from key sectors of the economy. Development partners, policy makers, academia, and leading civil society organizations shall make meaningful contributions with inputs from key sectors of the economy.
The main objectives of the 23rd Annual LAPO Annual Development Forum are:
Increase knowledge on food security and sustainable agriculture in Nigeria
Provide farmers and agro-business owners with access to funding opportunities
Provide opportunities for entrepreneurs, development partners, academia, policy makers and all relevant stakeholders to interact on a sustainable agriculture in Nigeria.
Provide information on youth employment opportunities in Nigeria
The end-product of the Forum would be a documented report containing presentations of speakers, summary of discussions, major conclusions and recommendations, which can provide a road map for arming farmers with the required information and skills to strengthen their competitiveness.
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