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IMPROVED AND SUSTAINED FISH CULTURE FOR LOKOJA COMMUNITY

Collaborate and Engage the people of LOKOJA community in producing and providing a nourished kogi fish for the world.

Photo of Abdulkarim Ahmad
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Lead Applicant Organization Name

ORGANIZED COMMUNITY PEOPLE NIGERIA INITIATIVE (OCPNI)

Lead Applicant Organization Type

  • Small NGO (under 50 employees)

If part of a multi-stakeholder entity (i.e. team), provide the names of other organizations and types of stakeholders collaborating with you.

ZAHRA FARM AND FOODS.COM

Website of Legally Registered Entity

www.ocpnl.org

How long have you / your team been working on this Vision?

  • Under 1 year

Lead Applicant: In what city or town are you located?

Abuja

Lead Applicant: In what country are you located?

Nigeria

Your Selected Place: what’s the name of the Place you’re developing a Vision for?

LOKOJA

What country is your selected Place located in?

Nigeria

Describe your relationship to the place you’ve selected.

LOKOJA is the capital of Kogi state,north central region of Nigeria. It famous as the home of fish varieties in Nigeria. l am of the Igala ethnic group and LOKOJA in English  means ( come and eat fish ).Lokoja town host the confluence of the two major rivers in Nigeria River Niger and River Benue and it the first administrative capital of Nigeria at the time of British colonial government due to it convenient location .

LOKOJA town had experience commercial activities in earnest  as a result of it advantageous nearness to the bank of River Niger and River Benue. Back in the days before the bridge was built on the River Niger persons and goods are ferried across the river the sight attraction then was many fishermen engaging in fishing activities today this fishing activities has drastically reduced as a result of consistency human quest for survival.

LOKOJA is the capital of Kogi state, the home state of the lead applicant. Aside visitation and holiday we frequent the town for social function and engagement . Few members of our partners and volunteers are permanent resident of LOKOJA town. We communicate daily to charting a new front for it development .

Describe the People and Place: Provide information that would be helpful for an outsider who has never been there and may have no context about this Place to better understand the area.

Pre-colonial LOKOJA like other towns in Nigeria has been inhabited by people of different ancestral and ethnic background .Notable among this ethnic group are the Nupe people,the Igala people,the Oworo people and the Bassa Nge people and Hausa. The present modern LOKOJA was established by William Barkie in 1857 a British explorer. At the time of British colonial government LOKOJA was the first seat of power where the Governor-General of Nigeria Sir Frederick Lord Lugard governed the nation.This historic transition has impacted greatly on the town LOKOJA has remained a major gate -way that connect the southern and northern parts of Nigeria. The closest Air transport is the Nnamdi Azikwe international airport Abuja. Abuja the capital city of Nigeria is about 165 Km drive from LOKOJA .The traditional leader is called MAIGARI (chief) and the other subordinate Chiefs are called (Hakimi) .Religion Islam,Christianity and traditional worshippers are available. The major stable food is Tuwo shikafa ( Rice paste ) and fish soup.The temperature is usually hot. LOKOJA has a lot of mountains and hills notable mountain is called mount patti There is availability of water from the two rivers River Niger and River Benue. The major languages are Igala, Ebira, Okun, Nupe and Bassakupa.The cultural activities differ among the tribe, each has it peculiar tradition,one prominent socio cultural activity is the fishing festival celebrated by the fishermen annually.The various language interact freely and engaged in social and economic activities .Lokoja town has rural villages and suburb namely Ganaga, Adankolo and Felele.

Agriculture is main source of economic and fishing in riverine communities. The people engaged in farming for consumption. Aquaculture has not been utilized and it a green area left untapped. Dominant crops are Rice, Yam, Maize, and Cassava. The hope of the people yearned for good governance that will provide the basic social amenities and intervention from organization that will leads to personal development . Fish is a source of protein,vitamins and minerals for the people.

What is the approximate size of your Place, in square kilometers? (New question, not required)

3180

Challenges: Describe the current (2020) and the future (2050) challenges that your food system faces.

In LOKOJA, fishing is part of life and a means of livelihood,it is an act that is passed from one generation to another.

There has been a great depletion of freshwater fish species in our river due to rapid fish catches by the fishermen over the years . The introduction of modern fishing equipment has helped worsen the situation which had already caused wide decrease in stock.Redundance and unemployment had set-in in the communities .

This situation has caused migration of fishermen to other location from their ascestral home,most time the fishermen had to travel a long distance from home in search of high catch which also has yielded no results .

Our vision is to create a brand with KOGI FiSH and make LOKOJA a hub for fish culture this have lead us to develop a prototype call the FISH CULTURE HUB. Our aims is value addition to fish production and  fish processes to meet international competitiveness standards and our challenges are as follows

> Fish feed : Fish nutrition is of two types. One is natural and include algae and tiny animal which are produced in the pond and production is enhanced by fertilization. And the second kind fish nutrition is supplementary . The type of food to be used depends on the local availability, cost, and fish species to be raised.

> Fish seed : Sources of fish seed the basic factors to be considered in selecting a fish seed include the growth rate, the size and age at maturity, feeding habits and susceptibility to disease amongst other.

> knowledge and skill : Capacity and capability to meet its obligations to community through training and skill acquisition.

> security : At the community level the threat is minimal and its can be overcome. 

> Fish marketing : Survey of competition and its unique position and the assessment of the market size.

> Land and water supply : Access to land due to heredity lands are owned by family and it is transfer from generation to generation and thereby to acquire land near the river is a challenge.

Fish has provide good source of high quality animal protein ,vitamins and minerals and other nutrients important for for human health and growth .fish is the cheapest sources protein for rural dwellers in LOKOJA .

The availability of freshwater from the two rivers is in abundance and fish life in its entirety depends on water .Here we shall collaborate with communities in the projected areas of coverage to situate one or two pond close in the river in each community depending on the size of the participating community  where by we channel the freshwater from the river into the pond ,the pond will be owned by the community and our focal persons will be women and youth because the constitute the highest percentage of victim and women are found to be multitasking.




Address the Challenges: Describe how your Vision will address the challenges described in the previous question.

The community leaders will willingly allocate land for a projects and programs that will impact on the generality of the people in LOKOJA .It can be processed officially through the land office at the local government area council and it can be acquired through sales. Water supply is in abundance the two major Rivers Niger and Benue has provide us with a great volume water.

Security will be achieved through community policing and vigilante group, remembering that the project and programs is community based ,community owned,at the people domain prevention and protection will be of high priority .

The fish culture Hub will served as resourceful and pilot stations to all the stakeholders .stakeholders comprise the organization ,fishermen , women and youth, fish technologist .The center will provide training and interaction on new input and technology that will improve fish culture,the interaction on the new ideas will kick start at the community level a bottom up approach .

The bottom up approach is important for the success of the program it will present the idea in it general sense of purpose which will motivate and provide a rallying point for members of the community to demonstrate solidarity and commitment .

The fish culture hub will collaborate with the state ministry of agriculture private research persons and volunteers.to provide training.

There needs for the state government to provide an enabling business environment through legislation this will be achieved through collaboration and engagement.

The fish culture hub will provide solutions to fish feed and fish seed as science and technology will be explored in collaboration with researcher and fish technologist to improve on fish yield and values.

1 . Fish stocking : The selection of fish species which include the growth rate ,the size and age of maturity , feeding habit and resistance to disease 

2 . Fish nutrition :  The type to be used to feed the fish depending on availability and cost and fish species to be raised.

3 . Disease prevention and control ,emphasis will be laid on prevention because it cheaper to prevent disease than to treat in fish pond.

4.  Harvesting and pond maintenance ,Harvesting is to empty the pond water the outlet and take fish. Maintenance these involve the daily management practice to achieve high fish production at the end of harvest. 

The fish culture hub in collaboration with expertise in fish culture will provide training for the projected community on new inputs and skills to enhance fish production 

Preservation will be at the fish culture hub to prevent wastage and perish, the center will be equipped with environment friendly oven and cool room. All fish harvested at the pond in coverage areas will be collected to the center fish culture hub for processes, packaging and branded KOGI FISH.

A new market place has emerged with the development of a brand  KOGI FISH and KOGI FISH cafe 



,

High Level Vision: With these challenges addressed, now provide a high level description of how the Place and the lives of its People will be different than they are now.

The early transition that took place in establishment of LOKOJA town has helped placed the town in a strategic location. LOKOJA remained the major gate way and corridor that connect states in the southern part to the northern states in Nigeria and federal capital Abuja by road. Notable state like Lagos and Port Harcourt in the south and kaduna ,Kano and Abuja in the north. The corridor will provide huge market for KOGI FISH . LOKOJA proximity to the federal capital Abuja is of great advantage for the business to grow which will boost the economy of the town At the fish culture fish will be processed and package in two form Dry fish, roasted fish and fresh fish as it is popularly called in Nigeria

The people are well informed and equipped with knowledge and skill develop to enhance their ability to perform what they know how do best in a more convenient and improved way.( fish farming in their domain) .

The fear of wastage and perish is taken by fish culture .Market is available and the linkage between the community and the fish culture hub is established . The fish culture hub in partner with the community have transformed fish culture into cash crop in LOKOJA and will develop to sustain the need for its value as a cash crop.

Full Vision: How do you describe your Vision for a regenerative and nourishing food future for your Place and People for 2050?

It is impossible to overstate the importance of fish to the people of LOKOJA and Nigeria in general.Throughout history the people have used fish protein as food source with caught fish providing the bulk of fish protein .Today over fishing has brought a threat of depletion in the fishing activities, not withstanding the depletion in fishing activities,the potentiality of our vision place is huge and the opportunity knows no bound, by aligning our vision with the vision of the founding father which has favorably placed our vision place in a strategic location. This transition has avail us the ample opportunity to improve, to regenerate a sustainable and nourished fish production which we will achieve through fish culture Fish culture is the science of growing fish in pond and it has unique on-the-spot food characteristic.

The important of fish to human population throughout history cannot be overemphasized. Fish farming has gained popularity all over the and in the tropics in particular Nigeria inclusive because of its source of quality proteineous food as well as good returns for its values in trading. With the current dilemma of declining land productivity, frequent food shortage, reduced animal protein intake and escalating population. We have developed a prototype for LOKOJA called the FISHCULTURE HUB a special vehicle and a pilot station that will drive People of LOKOJA to future of abordant fish and nourished food. The link between the people of the community to the staff of the center is established ,the focal persons at coverage areas have direct access to staff at the center .The process have started and tranformation begin.

Science and technology will be employed in the breeding of different species of high values nutritional fish fingerling at the center and distribute to project and program coverage areas in LOKOJA . The center haven provided an in depth knowledge of fish stocking disease prevention and control ,water sources and quality fish nutrition , harvesting and fish pond maintenance . The location of the pond close to river is to channel the freshwater into the pond to maintain taste and nourish while taking to consideration flood prone areas The equipment for preservation and processing of harvested fish at the center will be fabricated by local artisan in the community 

LOKOJA strategic location has provide the town with a corridor of business opportunity and market potentials to boost it economy . An average of five thousand vehicles come through LOKOJA daily it has a huge vehicular movement , the waterway and seaport at LOKOJA if developed to it full capacity in future will contribute to the market volume for  business to thrive. The confluence of River Niger and River Benue , Mount Patti attracts tourist from all over the world .

In future the FISHCULTURE HUB has the plan to introduce Bird . This process involve the construction of poultry cage on the pond whereby the dropping from the birds will serve as feed for the fish and water from the pond channel to an open field to grow vegetables and maize.

There is need for the state government to review it sanctions policy to be more effective and the public be informed of the danger and the implication of dumping refuge and plastic waste close to the or in the river by the state health official. The government should be responsible for providing conducive economic environment that is free from discrimination 

The fish culture center shall provide adequate training for women and youth in the community to enhance the potential of women through fish culture . Many researches have show that poverty is a malady that incapacitates it's victim economically and indirectly subject he/she to a state of destitution ,voicelessness and powerlessness ( World Bank 2000) and unfortunately the most affected sex by the above incapacitation are women because of lack of control over asset and restrict mobility promoted by cultural practice which limit them economically . This is further complicated by biological factor of child bearing  as a result of the aforementioned women participation in political matters and business activities is limited .

Despite the political , social and economic constraints women are found to be more enterprising than man in Africa.( Liedhotin, 2001 and UNCTAD / UNIDO  on the average about 60 percentage of small and medium  scale business are owned  and managed by women . This means that women are able to stand up against poverty , create businesses and succeed in spite of the cultural and environmental constraints . The woman is found to have basic characteristics of self confidence , result oriented , risk taking , mentor ship  , originality and vision . Her usual position as credible back up in the times of family financial difficulties prepare her for needs based development strategies . She equipped with stimulus to change the way things were organized around her and subtly influence and impact on persons around her.



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Photo of Village Development  Center (VDC)
Team

Thank you so much for the Food Extension Initiative.

Photo of Abdulkarim Ahmad
Team

Thanks and welcome.

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