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NGO Partners International Organization on Women, Youth Development

(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – Some Civil Society groups in Enugu state, Southeast, Nigeria, and implementing partners of a foreign non-governmental organization, (NGO), ‘Solidaridad’ have stressed the need for women, youths, immigrants’ involvement in palm oil business.

 They also urged state actors in Enugu state to put in place policies that would assist in addressing problems relating to deforestation, climate change, bush burning and other environmental issues capable of affecting oil palm production.

Solidaridad, which has its headquarters in Netherlands, is a development organization with bias in promotion of agriculture in areas as Cotton, Livestock, tea, Sugarcane, fruits and vegetable, as well as palm produce, among others.

The establishment which has its West Africa’s Regional office in Ghana, is presently supporting the growth of smallholders oil palm development in Nigeria including Enugu state, and  also pursuing the attainment of its vision through her flagship project, national initiative for sustainable and climate smart oil palm smallholders (NISCOPS)

Speaking Thursday in Enugu during a one day state-wide consultative meeting on inclusive oil palm practice, and promotion of women and child protection policies in Enugu state, Mrs. Ijeoma Onwuka, of Women Information Network, (WINET) and one of the partners, said one of the objective of the meeting was to equip the participants, particularly rural  women with vital information’s as it relates to oil palm practice.

The meeting which equally emphasised on issue of social inclusion, climate change, mitigation and adaption, as well as promotion of women and child protection via policies in Enugu state, harped on the need for synergy between relevant state Actors and the stakeholders with a view to achieving a sustainable and climate smart oil palm in the state.

Mrs. Onwuka, further disclosed that the meeting which drew participants from the five council areas of Udenu, Isi Uzo, Udi, Aninri, and Nkanu West  of Enugu state where the Solidaridad project are ongoing, was also designed to inculcate in them the Best management practices (BMP).

 A  resource persons, from Dear Africa, one of the implementing partners,  Mrs. Aunli Akaose, had in her remarks, regretted that in some Igbo clan or Communities, women, youths, immigrants, and people with disabilities are not allowed to own palm trees, calling on village heads to change such uncivilized practice  and embrace social inclusion.

She, however, advised women,  youths, and immigrants  in Enugu state, and South-;East in general  to embrace oil palm produce business which according to her, is as lucrative as the crude oil business if properly managed.

“Every individual, including women, youths, immigrants, even the Abinos should be given the opportunity to own oil palm trees in various Communities in Igbo land, and Enugu state in particular.

 Enugu state commissioner for environment, Hon. Chijioke Edoga, who spoke through the Head of Department, Climate change in the Ministry, Mr. Nnamdi Arum, said that the state government is always disposed in partnering with organizations such Solidaridad.

 The four implementing partners includes, Winet, Rural Engagement and Development Foundation, RED, led by Mr. Ozor Kingsley Ugonna and PEFAV.



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