The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Alhaji Muhammad Sabo Nanono has called for partnership and collaboration with relevant stakeholders in the sector to drive the mechanization agenda and other laudable programmes of the ministry in line with the administration’s focus and commitment in diversifying the economy through agriculture.
He said the potentials in the sector were enormous and needed to be optimally explored for its huge benefits including creating jobs and economic growth.
The Minister disclosed this when he received in audience, members of the Nigeria Young Farmers Network led by its Convener/Director-General, Mr Promise Amahah , in his office, in Abuja, Thursday, 4th February, 2021.
Nanono urged the youth to embrace the mechanization and the livestock programme of the ministry as it targets huge employment platforms for value chain development across board. For the livestock alone, the minister explained that the value chain include: cattles, horses, goats, feeds, diaries etc . In the mechanization value chain, Nanono said about 632 Local Government Areas across the nation will benefit from the mechanization process providing: Service Centres, Tractors, mechanics and administrators and will be driven by the private sector. He added that the mechanization programme will soon be rolled out, only awaiting the approval of the National Assembly.
The Minister also received on a courtesy visit the Vice-Chancellor of the Kano State University of Science and Technology, (KUST), Wudil , Kano State in company with the newly deployed Permanent Secretary to the Ministry, Dr Ernest Umakhihe, who performed his first official function with the Hon Minister today. He said the ministry is interested in the university’s agricultural programmes and also in area of technical assistance especially with its faculty of Agriculture.
According to him, “we are trying to refocus the ministry and broaden the perspective in the way and manner we look at agriculture, we are dealing with the development of the resource base of the country of which agriculture is one of them with over 60 million hectares of arable land to cultivate “.
Nanono reiterated the importance of synergy between agriculture and industrialization such as mechanization, strengthening of the research institutes for improved seedlings, reinvigorating of the extension services. He emphasized that the country is rich and the people must be rich at heart to tap the unlimited potentials in the agricultural sector.
In his earlier remarks, Vice Chancellor, KUST, Prof Shehu Musa had commended the minister for the innovations introduced under his leadership and said the visit was to seek support of the ministry in areas of livestock, poultry and mechanization .
Prof Musa said the university is also ready to grab the opportunities of partnership offered by the minister with three key departments of the ministry including ; fisheries, livestock and extension services, adding that the partnership will benefit Nigerians particularly the youth.
In a similar remark earlier, the convener of of Nigeria Young Farmers Network, Mr Promise Amahah, said the group was excited about the potentials in the agricultural sector and determined to strengthen the ranks of the young people in AgriC business to create a more holistic eco system.
He said the group is focused on addressing the Sustainable Development Goals(SDG) Goals 1,2,5 and 8 which are focused in mitigating and eradicating hunger, poverty and also achieving inclusive growth. Hence, it was unveiling a programme tagged “Raise a Million Young Farmers Initiative”. He said the programme targets youths across the country.
Promise also explained that the partnership is a moral boaster for youth engagement in agriculture as it will help to further unlock the potentials in the sector. He said that it will also connect young people in agriculture and raise young Nigerian farmers.
Eno Olotu (Mrs)
Dep Director, Information
For: Director, Information
4th February , 2021