By Raymond Osho
ABEOKUTA: To reduce unemployment rate to the barest minimum, the Ogun State Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun has suggested youths’ engagement in agricultural ventures as veritable tool.
Abiodun equally urged youths in the country, especially the unemployed to think outside the box and imbibe creativity in order to exit the arena of joblessness.
The Governor disclosed this on Thursday August, 29, 2019 while delivering his keynote address at the flag-off ceremony for Fadama Graduate Unemployed Youths and Women Scheme (FADAMA GUYS) at his Oke-Mosan Governor’s office in Abeokuta, the State capital.
Abiodun, who regrets the alarming unemployment rate in the county, also lamented that: “Without any iota of doubt, the level of unemployment in Nigeria is quite unbearable”.
He disclosed that the 200 beneficiaries of the Scheme would be considered and given an opportunity to be the first set of farmers that would derive grants from the Anchor Borrowers Programme recently inaugurated in the State.
The Governor explained that the Fadama Guys was a unique programme as it targets two main vulnerable groups of the population, adding that a gainfully employed citizenry would contribute in no small measure to the socio-economic development of the state and the country.
He told the beneficiaries; ” I was just discussing with Dr. Oredipe and I said these guys, how can we integrate them into our Anchor Borrowers Programme and I have mandated Dr. Oredipe, Consultant on Agriculture, our agric team, the Permanent Secretary to seat down and integrate you into our Anchor Borrowers Programme, so by the grace of God, you will be the first beneficiaries of our Anchor Borrowers Programme.
His word; “The ‘Fadama Guys’ is particularly unique because it is targeted at two main vulnerable groups of our population, the youths and the women, and we are also elated that our Public Private Partnership approach towards the successful implementation of Building Our Future Together agenda is already yielding positive results,” he said.
Governor Abiodun added that the Fadama Graduate Unemployed Youths Scheme (Fadama Guys) at the Micro Economic level would provide employment opportunities in Agriculture for youths and women, adding that the Macro Economic level would help the country boost its food and self sufficiency agenda.
“At the Micro Economic level, this Fadama Guys provides job employment opportunities in Agriculture for our youths and women, thereby providing income and food for themselves, and family, on the Macro Economic level, this is another boost to Nigeria’s Food and Self Sufficiency Agenda, this will go a long way to reduce foreign exchange spent on importation of food items that could be produced locally,” he said.
In her welcome address, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Mrs. Abosede Ogunleye said that the objective of the National Fadama Development Project Additional Funding was to increase the income of users of rural lands and water resources in a sustainable manner throughout the country.
She explained that the scheme would also reduce poverty, while food security would be enhanced, urging the beneficiaries to judiciously make use of the grants they received.