The Minister of Agriculture and
Rural Development, Audu Ogbeh, at the weekend maintained that the Federal
Government will engage youth in the country for massive
food production as it partners with African development
Bank (AfDB) and International
Institute for Tropical
He said this in a statement at a two day youth programme
‘Empowering Novel Agri-Business-Led Employment’ ENABLE, organised by the AfDB in collaboration with IITA.
“The African Development Bank Group is our reliable and trusted partner.
We are appreciative of the support of the support and cooperation that we have enjoyed from our partnership over years, with a view to jointly and meaningfully repositioning the
agricultural sector in Nigeria as a virile engine of growth,” Ogbeh, who was represented by the Minister of State, Agriculture, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri said.
“Probably, the most topical issue in the world today is the need to harness the potential of the youth for rapid and sustainable development.
Increasingly, we are seeing evidence around the world that we can no longer take our youth for granted.
“For Nigeria and other countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, agriculture remains essentially the most veritable and enduring platform for
empowering our youths to effectively position them at the driving seat for
implementation of policy initiatives and actions aimed at resolving the endemic challenges of poverty and underdevelopment in our different spheres.
“Indeed, unless we begin to take urgent steps to empower our youth to take the baton of transforming our society and nations from us, we cannot confidently state that the future security and prosperity of our beautiful world can be guaranteed,” Ogbeh said.
The minister noted that without funds nothing can be
achieved through the youth in the agriculture sector. He said access and affordable finance remains a challenge in the sector.
He also decried the ministry’s borrowing plan approved by the National Assembly was $200 million, which is just a drop considering the population 180 million Nigerians.