President Muhammadu Buhari has urged the people of the Niger Delta region to shun illegal pipeline vandalisation and oil theft and seek wealth creation through peace and focus on agriculture for sustainable economic development and wealth creation.
President Buhari,who was represented by the Minister of state for Agriculture and Rural Development, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, made the appeal yesterday at the 20th anniversary of Nigerian Agip Oil Company’s Green River Project Farmers Day in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State capital, also urged them to take advantage of the huge potential in agriculture and stop the destruction of oil and gas pipelines which only served to destroy the country’s ecosystem and economy.
According to President Buhari said, “I wish to acknowledge the unrelenting efforts of the Nigerian Agip Oil Company, who in their bid to prove that oil production and agriculture can coexist, has for the past 29 years supported their host communities to focus on agriculture through the GRP, a corporate social responsibility initiative which has resulted in sustainable development in these communities.
“I appeal to the people of the Niger Delta region to embrace peace and focus on agriculture for sustainable economic development and wealth creation. I urge you to take advantage of the huge potential in agriculture and stop the destruction of oil and gas pipelines which only serve to destroy our ecosystem and economy.”
“The present administration is committed to doing everything possible to support the people of the Niger Delta to achieve their potential in agriculture which is far more than its endowments in oil and gas.”
PMB said the focus of his administration was to redirect attention to agriculture in its entirety and empower Nigerians in a productive and sustainable manner.
He said the process entailed treating agriculture as a business to create wealth and provide employment and take the country from being an import dependent country to a self – sufficient nation with surplus for export to earn foreign exchange.