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2003, Volume 19(2), December

O. S. Verma, Editorial

  1. Vegetables Production Training Course 4B Coordinators’ Perceptions, Stephen Kayode Subair.

  2. Rural Women’s Perceived Barriers To Extension Participation: The Zimbabwe Case, Anna E. Mudukuti.

  3. Adoption of Soyabean Production Technology In Kwara State, Nigeria, O. A. Adekunle, I. Ogunlade, & O. I. Oladele.

  4. Perceptions of Extension Specialists About the Application of Strategic Management in Agricultural Extension Service in Iran, Seyed Jamal Hosseini & Ghodartollah Bidokhi.

  5. Socio-Economic Indicators of Adult-Females In Rural Communities of Nigeria, O. A. Oloruntoba & E. O. Fakoya.

  6. Reasons For Adult Learners Participation in Literacy Programs in South-Eastern Botswana, P. J. Squire & F. Tladi.

  7. Mango Growers Perception About Training Subject Matter Areas and Training Methods Assessed Through Pairwise Matrix Ranking, M. Ramasubramanian & M. Manoharan.

  8. Determinants of Household Heads’ Level of Achievement In Rural Nigeria: A Correlation Analysis, O. D. Kolawole.

  9. Information, Consultany and Change in Agriculture A review of the scene from The Czech Republic, Milan Slavik.

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2003 International Fresh Water Year

Do you know that water crisis is more serious than livelihood, food, and shelter. Out of total water available on earth only 2.7 per cent is fresh water. World is apparently going to face acute water crisis in the near future. This will lead to an existential crisis threatening the entire population. The United Nations has, therefore, declared 2003 as International Fresh Water Year to tackle pandemic water problems with alacrity. In order to conserve water, active participation of every individual, organization, and Government is inevitable so as to save water to save life.

Have you ever thought that 66 per cent of rain water is drained out to oceans. Level of groundwater is falling at the rate of almost one meter per year. Ground water resources are depleting owing to negligence of our traditional means of water conservation in rivers, ponds, and lakes etc. Depletion of water resources is to be checked by controlling rapid rate urbanization, over exploitation of ground water resources, excessive cutting of forests, plants, and trees, filling of earth in ponds and lakes for habitation, inefficient and wasteful use of water, and indifferent behaviour towards water conservation. Keeping these as prerogatives, we have to formulate a Water Policy and prepare an Action Plan to tackle the water crisis.

Water Policy needs to envisage it compulsory for all new buildings with a plot area of more than 300 square meter to install Raft Structure to collect Rain Water. Collecting rain water from roof top of the buildings and storage in tanks for use when required is the simplest rain water harvesting technique. In every rainy season, 65,000 litres of rain water can be collected from a roof of 100 square meter which can cater to the drinking and domestic needs of water of a family consisting of 4 members for 100 days.

Rain water harvesting can also be done from roof top through drain pipes in small trenches and underground water storage tanks located at suitable place from where the water will be percolated down to ground water strata. Thirdly, abandoned wells and borewells can also be used fro rain water harvesting. Fourthly, traditional means of water conservation in ponds, lakes, and baoli should be renovated for rain water harvesting. Fifthly, waste water effluents should be treated for use in gardening and horticulture purposes.

Action plan for ground water recharging needs to elaborate the process for better water management through controlling leakage and wastage in the water supply network, promotion of water recycling, control over exploitation of ground water resources, and by creating awareness about effective water conservation. New water bodies have to be created and rain water harvesting mechanisms are to be installed so as to recharge the ground water through ponds and reservoirs.

Keeping water standards is yet another important issue. What parameters and quality specifications for water which can be used for drinking. This task is very ambiguous. In addition to drinking, water has various other uses like washing, gardening, irrigation, and use in toilets. Who will be the Watchdog for keeping the water standards in these uses. Will the complex task result in a broad range of standards which will effectively dilute the very purpose.

In the United States, Environment Protection Agency sets standards for about 90 contaminants ranging from factory effluents, herbicides, insecticides, and E. coli bacteria to turbidity and erosion of natural mineral deposits. In addition, it has guidelines for contaminants which may have cosmetic effect such as skin or tooth discolouration or affect taste, odour, and colour. Standards take into account technology, technique, and affordability. But standards should not be viewed in isolation. Suppliers are also required to safeguard the watersheds.

Water is the only drink for a wise man. While 85 per cent of urban population has access to drinking water, only 20 per cent meet the standards as safe drinking water. Devaluation of the intrinsic worth of water is directly linked to escalating price tag attached to it. In another 25 years, India will have the dubious distinction of having the largest number of people deprived of safe and potable water.

Worldwide, nearly 1.50 lakh people are added to urban population every day. While the Indian population is 16 per cent of the global population, apportioned global water resources are only 4 per cent. In fact, national cost of collecting water is 150 million woman days per year and growing as per capita availability of fresh water dips. Due to burgeoning population in cities, 60 per cent of the land gets covered and natural ground water recharge drops drastically. Ground water depletion, therefore, has to be checked at all cost.

Unlawful and wrong practices, however, need to be checked first. In some urban localities, unlawfully borewells are sucked up to 20 feet in depth through which dirty water from water-logged streets is directly re-introduced into the ground water. These borewells are directly charging the underground streams through which the tube wells are drawing water for drinking. Such unscientific and anti-environmental practices are suicidal and pose a big threat to the denizens. Therefore, effective checks on such practices need to be made through specific rules and regulations.

In some village in India, water crisis is so acute that women trudge two kilometers down the hillocks to fetch water from handpumps and wells. It is the journey back that is grueling especially in killing heat and with pots delicately balanced on their heads. No man, therefore, wants to marry off his daughter in these villages. Prospective grooms will have to shell out Rs. 50,000/-for a bride. Water is a precious liquid indeed. Net World-War appears to be fought for water. Be prepared. (p. 1-3)

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Vegetables Production Training Course 4B Coordinators’ Perceptions, Stephen Kayode Subair, 4-22.

The ‘4B’ club was introduced in Botswana for the purpose of providing youths with the opportunity to improve themselves through some project work such as poultry raising, sewing and vegetable gardening. Vegetable production remains the most popular project that the ‘4B’ club member chose. Therefore, the Ministry of Agriculture through a Government programme, is recently trying to encourage the use of the ‘4B’ club to boost vegetable production and supply in the country. A “4B” club is made of 25 members who are interested in vegetable production. Each “4B” club is headed by a ‘4B’ coordinator who is appointed by the Ministry of Agriculture. A questionnaire was developed by the researcher using the procedures suggested by Mellum Associates (1982) and used to collect information from all the 42 ‘4B’ coordinators who attended the vegetable production training refresher course. They were asked to indicate their personal characteristics as well as their level of perceptions along a four and five point Likert type of rating scale respectively. Frame and selection errors were controlled while sampling error was not a threat because the study was a census survey research involving all the 42 ‘4B’ coordinators. The statements in the domains were validated and the reliability estimate calculated and found to range between 0.71-0.82. The results revealed that in general, the ‘4B’ coordinators perceived that their Trainers performed well in the Vegetable crops taught during the training sessions. They also perceived that the content and the logistics of the training sessions were good; and that most of the vegetable crops taught about were important in Botswana. Also, the ‘4B’ coordinators perceived they had good knowledge and skills of the vegetable crops discussed during the training sessions, indicating that the vegetable training programme was well conducted.

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Rural Women’s Perceived Barriers To Extension Participation: The Zimbabwe Case, Anna E. Mudukuti, 23-31.

The article describes selected characteristics of participants and their perceived barriers to Extension participation. Very little is known about the barriers that limit women’s Extension participation. Data were collected from 377 rural women in Shurugwi District Zimbabwe, using face-to-face interviews. A reliable and valid researcher-developed interview schedule elicited two categories of information from the participants: (a) demographic information, and (b) perceived barriers to participation. Data were analyzed using SPSS. Findings revealed that rural women’s greatest barriers to Extension participation were transportation, lack of information, and time constraints. Results of the study can help the Department of Agricultural Technical and Extension Services (AGRITEX) in finding solutions to overcome some of the perceived barriers to Extension participation by women, attract a wider audience, and lead to the success of Extension programs in rural Zimbabwe.

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Adoption of Soyabean Production Technology In Kwara State, Nigeria, O. A. Adekunle, I. Ogunlade, & O. I. Oladele, 32-35.

Adoption of soyabean production technology was examined with a view to determine factors responsible for its uptake. Three hundred soybean farmers were selected using a simple random sampling technique from a sampling frame of 1800 farmers. Result shows that the highest adoption score of 4.7 was found for soyabean variety and weed control. Use of fertilizer, time of harvesting, and threshing methods had the same adoption scores of 4.6. Spacing and time of planting had 4.5 and 4.3 adoption scores respectively. The study concludes that adoption varies with different technologies in the technology package.

World production statistics on soyabean show that Nigeria is the second to Zimbabwe, the leading producer of soyabean in tropical Africa. Soyabean can now be grown in all ecological zones of Nigeria. Nigerian government is, therefore, now attempting to boost soyabean production by funding researches, subsidizing inputs, and providing Extension services to reach farmers with new innovations. Collaborative efforts of International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Institute of Agriculture Research and Training (IAR&T), Institute of Agricultural Research (IAR), University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN), and International Development Research Centre (IDRC) have led to bring break-through in soyabean production package. Agricultural Development Projects especially in Kwara State have taught farmers on soyabean production. However, in spite of these efforts, soyabean is produced on small farm holdings of 1-2 ha with an average yield of 600-800 kg/ha which is far below 1800-2646 kg/ha obtained on experimental plots. This study, therefore, attempted to examine farmers adoption of soyabean production technology package in Kwara state, Nigeria.

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Perceptions of Extension Specialists About the Application of Strategic Management in Agricultural Extension Service in Iran, Seyed Jamal Hosseini & Ghodartollah Bidokhi, 36-47.

Purpose of this study was to assess the perception of Extension specialists about the application of strategic management in the Extension service of Iran. The sample population was 220 specialists in the Ministries of Agriculture and Jahad Sazandegy. Research was descriptive and casual correlation method was used. Data were collected by questionnaire and analyzed by using SPSS. Results of the study show that Extension specialists within the Ministry of Jahad believed that there was a positive relationship between small sizes of the farms and the application of strategic management in Iran, but the perception of the Extension specialists from the Ministry of Agriculture was different. The results also indicated that the Extension specialists believed that there were relationships between the application of strategic management and the cultural problems in the rural areas. Respondents also indicated that the financial resources in the extension organization in Iran had direct impacts on the application strategic management.

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Socio-Economic Indicators of Adult-Females In Rural Communities of Nigeria, O. A. Oloruntoba & E. O. Fakoya, 48-57.

The study used socio-economic indicators such as income and pattern of expenditure, education, occupation and household size in assessing status of rural adult-females. Descriptive and chi-square statistics were used to analyse data obtained from cross-sectional survey of adult-females in six selected rural communities in Ifelodun Local Government Area of Kwara State, Nigeria. Findings suggest that rural adult-females exhibit variables typical of poor status because majority of them have low average monthly income, high expenditure on food consumption, which fueled low savings. They are also mostly petty traders with large family size of eight persons, sourced for informal credit to boost income-generating activities and have low education. The paper presents extension strategy to ameliorate their conditions and offer recommendations to improve opportunities for women as providers and beneficiaries in education, micro-loans, agriculture and family planning. These are essential ingredients for faster socio-economic progress, increase adoption of technologies and reduced population growth.

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Reasons For Adult Learners Participation in Literacy Programs in South-Eastern Botswana , P. J. Squire & F. Tladi, 58-66.

The study was a descriptive survey, designed to determine the reasons for adults’ participation in literacy programs. The findings showed that the majority of the respondents were male, above 30 years of age, single, had more than one child, and more than 12 years work experience. The major reasons for the respondents’ participation in the literacy programmes were to improve on their job skills, contribute more to their society, protect their jobs, grow intellectually, gain higher qualification, share experiences and, seek or gain promotion. The respondents perceived the majority of the literacy programmes; resources to be inadequate. The study recommended that: (1) adequate literacy program resources be provided; and (2) adult literacy programs be combined with teaching practical and problem solving skills to prepare the participants for the world of work and be able to manage changes in the environment and in the socio-economic development of their country and communities.

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Mango Growers Perception About Training Subject Matter Areas and Training Methods Assessed Through Pairwise Matrix Ranking, M. Ramasubramanian & M. Manoharan, 67-76.

In India, among fruit crops, mango ranks first in area and production. Though it is an important fruit crop, it’s production has been declining indicating the need for farmers’ training in production technologies. The training need analysis, assessed through one of the PRA methods of pairwise matrix ranking, revealed that insect pest management, alternate bearing management, disease management, fertilizer management, and pruning are the preferred subject matter areas. Exhibition with discussion, lecture with discussion, field visit and study tour are the farmers preferred training methods.

This study was framed with two specific objectives. (1) To find out the perception of mango growers about subject matter areas of training, and (2) To find out the perception of mango growers about preferred methods of training. Nowadays, PRA (Participatory Rural Appraisal) has been gaining momentum as a data collection tool. PRA and community participation are widely used by development, academic and political institutions worldwide. To add a new dimension to the study, it was decided to collect data through select PRA tools.

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Determinants of Household Heads’ Level of Achievement In Rural Nigeria: A Correlation Analysis, Oluwatoyin Dare Kolawole, 77-88.

The study investigated socio-economic and institutional factors affecting the achievement levels of rural household heads in Lagos State, Nigeria. A multistage sampling technique was used in selecting 200 representative respondents from five most rural Local Government Areas, (Badagry, Epe, Ibeju-Lekki, Ikorodu, and Alimosho). Two communities were randomly selected from each of the 5 Local Government Areas and 20 household heads were then randomly interviewed from each of the 10 selected communities. Pre-tested, structured and unstructured interview schedule was used in collecting data on household heads achievement levels, their socio-economic and personal characteristics. Descriptive and inferential statistics were used in analyzing the data. The result showed that majority (83.0%) of the rural household heads had low level of achievement. A positive and strong relationship existed between household’s level of achievement and occupation (r=0.3820); farming scope (r=0.2821); association membership (r=0.3191); contact with government and income level (r=0.3285). Negative but significant relationship existed between household’s achievement level and age (r=0.3151); and risk aversion (r=0.3086).

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Information, Consultany and Change in Agriculture A review of the scene from The Czech Republic, Milan Slavik, 89-100.

Since 1989, agriculture in Central Europe has been characterized by changes in land ownership, farm structures and marketing systems for farm products. These have been accompanied by fundamental changes in the ways in which information is supplied, and advice given, to the new private farmers and other farm structures. The paper reviews what has been done and achieved in the past decade to develop Extension and Consultancy Services, using the Czech Republic as the main example. There now exist multiple-source information systems consisting of government extension and private consultants, commercial company, research and educational institution advisory activities, in addition to the traditional social systems (family and friends) within which ideas are exchanged and decisions informed. Information technology is widely used. Since 1997, attention has focused on registration and certification procedures to ensure basic levels of professional competency among consultancy staff. The paper uses new research studies in arriving at its conclusions.

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