The Speaker, Taraba State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Abel Peter Diah has said, lack of inclusiveness of locals in policy formulation over the years was responsible for some policy failures in the Country.
Diah made the observation yesterday in his office in Jalingo when he received members of the Senior Executive Course 39 of the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies, (NIPSS) Kuru, Jos who are on a study tour of the State.
He noted that for a long time, policies in the Country were being formulated in Abuja without the involvement of the local Communities who are expected to key in, leading to policy failures in the Country, and advocated for a bottom top approach in policy formulation.
The Speaker told the delegation that Taraba has the potential to produce food for the entire nation, but lack of support from the Federal Government has hindered it from maximising the agricultural potential.
“I want to appeal to the Federal Government to consider Taraba for fertilisers and other farm inputs at the beginning of every cropping season to enable us feed the nation.
“As you tour the State, you will see the potential yourselves. Taraba has tea that can meet the nation’s demand, but lack of tea policy has hindered our success in this regard. So, we need a tea policy that can protect our local tea which is adjudged as one of the best in the world,” he said.
The Lawmaker who commended President Muhammadu Buhari for his genuine commitment in ensuring the commencement of work on the Mambila Hydro Power project, however, called on the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola to personally visit the site for an on the spot assessment to enable him appreciate the task ahead of him in kick starting work at the site.
While pledging the support of the State Assembly in ensuring that the Agricultural policy of the Federal Government succeeds, the speaker decried the continuous herdsmen/farmers clashes in the country, lamenting that some people were hiding under the cover of Fulani herdsmen to cause trouble and displace others from their land.
Diah called for caution on the part of the elites and the political class and urged them to refrain from making inflammatory statements and tagging some people as black sheep.
“As you make recommendations to the Federal Government, I implore you to advise them on the need for ranching and proper enlightenment of the people accordingly for the policy to succeed,” he said.
Earlier, Leader of delegation, Amb. Adamu Abbas informed the speaker that NIPSS is a Policy Research Institute that undertakes research on behalf of the Federal Government, adding that they have the mandate of Mr. President to undertake research on key policy issues.
“The Government of President Buhari is committed to revamping agriculture and that is why we are undertaking research on the role of Science and Technology Innovation in the development of agriculture in the Country”.
Amb. Abass noted that Taraba has the potential for agricultural production and that they were in the State to see how the potential of the State can be maximised to boost food production in the Country.
He thanked Governor Darius Ishaku for his deliberate efforts in promoting agriculture, describing the Taraba Agro Green House as a model and very strategic in checking vegetables importation into the country.