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The Agricultural Sector: Path towards achieving a wider range of CSR in Nigeria
01. September 2018 at 13:31
In a world of diverse needs (that calls for different actions to be taken by various corporate organizations), for which the government alone might not necessarily meet up to. There appears to be a gap between the understanding the community needs and what the corporate organizations take of their view.
Thus, in Nigeria, the responsibilities already taken by various corporate organizations can further be broadened if another focal is given to the Nigerian agricultural sector, which accounts for the means of livelihood of most of its citizens.

The happenings in different societies have place the need for innovative ideas that can help improve upon the social standard of different societies, within the Nigerian state. “…while income inequality between countries may have been reduced, inequality within countries has risen”. This would play out the importance of social initiatives, in achieving the goal of reducing inequality within countries, and improving upon social life.

So many social initiatives are been effected by different corporate organizations, especially in the oil and gas sector, such as: awarding of scholarships to eligible students (through the provision of grants that will aid in their studies), different competition avenues, like the NNPC Annual National Quiz Competition, which have been “impacting positively on the intellectual attainment of young Nigerians nationwide, preparing them for taking over the mantle of leadership of this great country”.

As a means of social contribution, I will in this article discuss social initiative in the agricultural sector, as another avenue that can help improve upon social life and livelihood of the rural settlers, mitigate problems that spans from. Lack of adequate funds to engage in quality and an economical agricultural practice, thereby improving upon local resource extraction that will in turn provide an increase in the Internally Generated Revenue of the Nigerian state.

“Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), is a business approach that contributes to sustainable development, by delivering economic, social and environmental benefits, for all stakeholders” Of recent, the Nigerian government has put most of its focus in its bid towards diversifying the Nigerian economy away from nonrenewable source of energy, towards maximizing the great resources of the nation from the agricultural sector. Just like in the view of P. C Mahalanobis (1960), to which he stated, “the underdeveloped countries often have large resources in the form of minerals and land, which is being or can be used to produce agricultural crops of various kinds, and which offer great possibilities of economic development”.

I will say that, Nigeria is a country blessed with a large bounty of land that can be use for agricultural purposes. But looking at the happenings around, most of those who are actively engaged in agricultural practice have somehow been constrained by the limitations of lack of funds, in either: the purchase of seedlings, funds for agricultural land, the hiring of human labor, engaging in modern agricultural practice, and other necessary logistics to be considered for an economical farming and other practices found within the agricultural sector.

One initiative to be considered under the agricultural social initiative is the awarding of agricultural grants to eligible agricultural practitioners. The achievement of this initiative would help provide the path towards having the needed funds (to an appreciable state), that are needed in order to utilize in acquiring machineries, agricultural land, human labor, and acquiring the knowledge and expertise to be used in the different processes that are needed for a modern agricultural practice.

“Education, training and innovation are not a solution to all problems; but society’s ability to solve problems, develop competitively, eliminate poverty and reduce inequality is severely hampered without them”. Providing agricultural grants will not be enough, if the social impact that this agricultural social initiative is meant to deliver, is not operated in its entirety. Hence, to ensure a holistic delivery of this initiative.

Organizing educational forums, training sessions etc, will help ensure appropriate channeling of the grants to be awarded. Training sessions such as; use of seedlings, use of pesticides, teaching on use of agro chemicals, animal husbandry, maintaining soil fertility, technical knowhow of operators, storage system etc, serves this purpose. All these, will be geared towards paving the pathway for innovative enterprises, and improving upon human livelihood.

The agricultural social initiative is also of that which spans to the scope of forest sustenance, effects of desertification, and land degradation. Through the different training sessions to be organized, the beneficiaries of the agricultural grants should be tutored on the measures to take, towards curbing problems such as that which the Goal 15 of the UN SDGs tends to address; which in its statements, “thirteen million hectares of forests are being lost every year, while the persistent degradation of dry lands has led to the desertification of 3.6 billion hectares”. And with this high figure, one can imagine what percentage Nigeria as a nation would hold.

With the high number of skilled personnel lying out there in partial idleness, due to lack of securing job opportunities, a focus on agricultural social initiative will proffer such persons with the opportunity to utilize their strength and time towards self value actualization. This will tend to also reduce the number of unemployed youths, and also help minimize other societal problems that has bedeviled the country, such as; arm robbery, kidnapping, political hoodlums etc, and thus, improve upon social life, provide an increase in the nation’s Internally Generated Revenue, and above all, provide the avenue for achieving a wider range of CSR by different corporate organizations, in their various host communities, with key consideration on the oil and gas sector.

The number of social problems that are been faced in Nigeria, might not receive its solution through a particular initiative, but the path towards the actualization and improvement upon social life of Nigerians could be hampered, if the sector that accounts for the nation’s food production and a high number of its inhabitant’s preoccupation is not giving adequate consideration. And, this cannot be left to the government alone. Corporate organizations can play an important role in contributing to the social life of majority of Nigerians, if another focus that can complement its ongoing social initiatives is been giving another focal look on the agricultural sector.
Cite This Article As: Abednego Ishaya. "The Agricultural Sector: Path towards achieving a wider range of CSR in Nigeria." International Youth Journal, 01. September 2018.

Link To Article: https://youth-journal.org/the-agricultural-sector-path-towards-achieving-a-wider-rang





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