By Raymond Osho
Ogun State Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun has commended President Muhammadu Buhari’s concerted effort in sustaining food security in the country and developing the agriculture sector.
Abiodun also commended the president for his unrelenting fight against corruption, adding that late MKO Abiola and President Buhari shared the same view that corruption was inimical to Nigeria’s development.
Governor Abiodun spoke with the State House correspondents on Tuesday July 30, 2019 after leading a delegation of Elders and political leaders from Ogun state on a courtesy visit to President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
He said Ogun State has taken a cue from the president’s programmes on agriculture, saying that he solicited the president’s support on agriculture as the CBN had different programmes that the state could benefit from in the agriculture sector.
The Governor listed some of the programmes as the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme; the Accelerated Agriculture Development Scheme (AADS) and the Commercial Agriculture Credit Scheme (CACS).
His words: “I requested that the president kindly put in a word with us to the CBN and the he graciously did that immediately; so, I want to commend the president because besides the fact that focus on agriculture guarantees food security for the nation.
“It also helps us in engaging our teeming youths; we are consequently allocating parcels of land to our youths.
“We are starting with about 10,000 youths in the first instance; we are going to assign a hectare of land each under the AADS and the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme.
“The CBN will be supporting us with land clearing and land preparation; we as a state will support them with the required agricultural extension services.
“The CBN will provide seedling for them through the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme and provide fertilizer and the anchor will off-take for processing,’’ he said.
The governor said his administration was working towards engaging in the first instance, 10,000 youths in agriculture.
He stated further that his administration had an ambitious programme to engage 40,000 youths in over 40,000 hectares; one hectare at a time allocation.
He also commended President Buhari on his efforts on security, adding that the Federal Government was also very sensitive towards ensuring that the lives and property of people were protected.
The Ogun State Governor however noted that President Muhammadu Buhari has restored dashed hope by immortalising Chief MKO Abiola, the presumed winner of 1993 Presidential election.
He said that by conferring national honours on Abiola and renaming the National Stadium after him, Buhari had soothed the feelings of many Nigerians, saying, “I came with eminent citizens of Ogun State to visit and thank President Buhari for graciously bestowing several honours on an illustrious son of Ogun State, Abiola.
“Abiola participated in a presidential election where historically a Muslim had another Muslim running mate; that election was adjudged free and fair; that election he was adjudged to have won, but was never declared the winner.
“Several years afterwards, it took the person of the president to bestow and rekindle that hope that was dashed which was the theme of Abiola’s campaign that time – tagged, ‘Hope 93’; and that hope was dashed by his untimely death at the age of 60.
“Our dear president rekindled that hope, firstly by committing and changing June 12 to be Democracy Day and bestowing on him a National Award GCFR, which is reserved for someone who has served on a national capacity.
“His naming a federal institution which is the stadium in Abuja after him, deservedly so; because Abiola is a true philanthropist and lover of sports.
“We thought it wise by coming with sons of Ogun State across board to come and show our deep appreciation to President Buhari.’’
Two former governors of the state, Olusegun Osoba and Gbenga Daniel amongst a host of others were part of the delegation.