Participants at the recent two weeks training on aquaculture production and fish post-harvest technology for unemployed women and youths, organised by Nigerian Institute of Oceanography and Marine Research, NIOMR and held at NIOMR, Badore fish farm, Lagos.
For Mrs Aminat Abdulahi from Oyo state, and a breadwinner of her family, coming to Lagos to be empowered will not only improve the standard of living of her family but will also make her an employer of labour.
The mother who had her child strapped to her back said, “ I am a petty trader, and feeding my family had not been easy. So coming to Lagos to get trained by NIOMR will enable my family to have sustenance and will also make me produce good and better fish as I am being empowered to produce, preserve and market fish. This is a lifesaver and I am grateful to NIOMR.
Speaking as a beneficiary of the training, Bibi Fi-ibite, from Rivers said the training will increase on the production of local fish and at the same time improve the living standard of Nigerians. We will have an improved living standard if we increase the production of fish as we are a deficit in that sector.
We currently need about 3.2 million tonnes of fish but produce only about 1,1 million tonnes. “ I came from Rivers for this training being that I have a small fish farm. But with this empowerment programme, I will enlarge my horizons having being trained to use technology to do fish production. “ he said .
On her part, Mrs Nnalue Funmilayo from Lagos noted that “ Being a staff of a research company, this training has made me know that fish production is beyond what was currently done. I now have the knowledge and skills on having a great fish post-production technology.
Dr Gbola Akande, Director, NIOMR explained that over-reliance on the oil sector, and the alarming rate of empowerment, and part of the federal government move to improve the agricultural sector necessitated the training.
Akande, Director, Nigerian Institute of Oceanography and Marine Research, NIOMR said there was a need to equip women and youths with skills in aquaculture, fish post-production.
Dr Akande represented by Dr Patricia Anyanwu, the Institute Director of Research, at a two weeks training on aquaculture production and fish post-harvest technology for unemployed women and youths, said that the 60 participants drawn across the federation will individually be given a starter pack that contained: a 25kg capacity fish smoking kit; 25kg table-size catfish; two plastic basins; one kitchen knife; one scale; 10kgs of charcoal and one logbook for record keeping.
According to NIOMR Director, “ The aquaculture occupied a very prominent position in the country. This is because, fisheries and aquaculture play major roles in employment generation, poverty alleviation, food security, and foreign exchange earnings especially in the rural poor.”