EMMANUEL AWARI, Jalingo
The Vice Chancellor, Taraba State University, Professor Vincent Ado Tenebe, has said Agriculture was the first and last profession of human beings on earth.
He said this during the 2nd Inaugural Lecture entilled: Plant Breeding and Genetics (the basics for food security), delivered by Professor Bakari Aliyu in Jalingo, the state capital.
. “You are what you eat, if you eat good food, you look good and if you eat garbages, you look malnourish. Food is the basic need in the life of every human being on this earth regardless of his status’’, he said.
He disclosed that Nigerian producers of Cowpea (Beans) have been banned in many countries due to the use of chemical for storage.
He revealed that Inaugural Lecturers are part of academic requirements for the confirmation of a Professor.
“Except a Professor delivered his Inaugural Lecture, if not he is not yet a full Professor, rather Acting Professor. Inaugural Lecture to every Professor is just like baptism and it is done once in life time”.
He called on other Professors that are yet to present their Inaugural Lectures to do same.
“If you leave the Academics without presetting your Inaugural Lecture, you will only be called Acting Professor”.
He revealed that Taraba State University has reached the stage of presenting Professorship Inaugural Lectures.
In his presentation, Professor Bakari Aliyu, said the Inaugural Lecture was the first from Department of Agronomy and the second in the University.
He said: “The Food and Agricultural Organization, FAO, of the United Nations, estimates that around 792.5 million people across the world are malnourished, out of which 780 million people are in the developing countries. In addition, about two billion people across the world suffers from another type of hunger known as Hidden Hunger, which is caused by inadequate intake of essential micronutrients in the daily diet, despite the global increase in food crop production”.
According to him, the major elements of hunger and undernourishment are Protein Energy Malnutrition (PEM) and micronutrients deficiency in micronutrients especially Vitamin A, iron, zinc among others.
He also disclosed that Vitamin A is essential micronutrients for maintaining eye sight, immune function, Growth and development.
Professor Aliyu, who is the Deputy Vice Chancellor, Academics, used the forum to highlight his achievements.
” During my time as Provost, College of Agriculture, I successfully ensured the accreditation of four newly established HND Programmes by the National Board for Technical Education, NBTE, Establishment of Center for Continuing Education and Consultancy Services, Staff Development policy and Office and that the College was rated as the best College of Agriculture in the country”.
“During my time as Director of the School of General and Preliminary Studies in the University, I was able to recommend and got Senate and Management approval for the establishment IJMB Programme with affiliation with the Ahmadu Bello University, ABU, Zaria. Similarly, I recommended and got approval for the establishment of Remedial Science Program aimed to provide foundation for candidates interested in Science, this I can go on and on”.
He disclosed that most Cowpea grown in Africa, particularly in Nigeria and Niger account for 66 per cent of world production followed by Burkina Faso, Ghana, Senegal and Mali.
He further said Nigeria was the leading producer and consumer of the crop and account for 61 per cent of production in Africa and 58 per cent worldwide.
He said there were challenges in the production of crops.
“The challenges of crop production include diseases, insect pests and post- flowering pests. It is a food security crop rich in Protein which helps to alleviate nutritional disorders in human and livestock”, he stated.
According to him, the Lecture is to recommend steps that are important in improving Food Security in Nigeria, which include national awareness campaign through the Federal and States Ministries of Agriculture, Development of viable Agriculture extension system in Taraba State and the country in general amongst others.
He expressed lauded the Vice Chancellor for motivating him to present the Inaugural Lecture as a sitting Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academics).
He appreciated the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture, IITA, Ibadan and others for their part played in the success of the Inaugural Lecture.
He further thanked Taraba State Government for its support towards the success of the various tasks assigned to him and also honouring him with state award on October 1, 2009.
For a better society.