An Agriculturist, Mr Stanley Chukwu, on Saturday urged Nigerian youths to engage in agriculture to restore the country’s economic fortunes.
Chukwu, who is with Manrole Global, an Agricultural Advocacy Organisation, made the appeal at the Human Rights Day Celebration organised by Justice, Development and Peace Commission of the Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the celebration entitled: “Right to Food is a Human Right” was held at St Theresa’s Catholic Church Ogba, Lagos.
Chukwu said that due to poor orientation about agriculture, many Nigerian youths believed that only the poor, old or retired could be farmers.
“If 20 million Nigerians engage in agriculture, we will turn the country around; the orientation of many Nigerians about agriculture is not good, in fact, parents frown at their children’s choice of becoming farmers.
“Before the discovery of crude oil, agriculture was the mainstay of the Nigerian economy, however, with the advent of oil, less attention was given to the agricultural sector.
“For Nigeria to develop, we need to change our mindset about agriculture, if we don’t do something now, by 2050 we will buy plastic rice by choice.
” The earlier we return to farming the better for us,” the agriculuturist said.
Also speaking, a Human Rights Lawyer, Mr Simon James, said that Nigeria was experiencing food shortage due to economic instability and persistent conflicts.
James, a Principal Partner with Robes and Gray, spoke on “Food Security and Why it Matters”. NBC To Empower 15,000 Youths, Stakes $900million On Improved Production
He said that constant increases in food prices had deprived many households of the right to three-square meals per day.
“To feed the future population, which the UN has projected to reach 9.8 billion in 2050, the agriculture sector needs significant long-term private investment so that we can improve the technologies to grow food.
“Another challenge to food security in Nigeria is poor storage systems and lack of processing capacity.