The governor of Ondo state, Rotimi Akeredolu, has pledged the commitment of his administration to transform the state economically through job provision and wealth creation with agriculture.
Akeredolu spoke on Thursday during a courtesy visit on him by members of FADAMA III Additional Financing project, led by the national project coordinator, Mr. Tayo Adewumi, to the governor’s office in Akure.
The governor appreciated the initiative of the federal government in introducing FADAMA, which he described, as a vehicle to provide means of livelihood to the teeming poor and those in the rural areas.
Akeredolu tressed the importance of tractors, which he said are very important to cultivate the land before planting.
“We pray that FADAMA can assist us with the provision of tractor equipment centers in each Senatorial District,” he said.
The governor expressed his concern about a pilot vegetable project, especially for women empowerment, citing the examples of such schemes as sole means of livelihood in some countries.
“It is less tasking, hence women can easily do this so that we don’t keep importing vegetables from South Africa,” he said.
The national project coordinator, FADAMA III Additional Financing, Mr. Tayo Adewumi, revealed that a-10 day program for youths would be organised.
“The programme, named GUYS, (Graduate Unemployment Youth Support) is to encourage youths from the ages of 18 to 35 to go into agriculture as a profession and business.
“By study, real farmers are aging away, some dead and old. To start with, 15 to 20 states, including Ondo, will be among the first phase of 200 to 300 youths per state.
“By end of June, starter packs should be given to the youths based on different enterprise of interest like aquaculture, or poultry,”
“A lot of social vices and Youth restiveness in Nigeria today, so the whole idea is to take them away from streets into farming,” he said.
Adewumi also explained that there was a plan for Sunshine rice in Ondo before the end of the year.
“We want to make sure that the rice we are producing, we bring it out publicly and give it a name and brand.
“We will work with your government to make sure we are able to do this,” he said.