As federal government organize for food production, the National Agricultural Lands Development Authority, (NALDA), has signed a memorandum of understating (MoU), with the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) for the start of a rice farm in Ebonyi State.
This initiative is part of the NALDA’s efforts to empower the youth, create jobs, generate wealth and ensure food security in the country under its National Young Farmers Scheme (NYFS).
The collaboration deal was sealed after NALDA and NYSC signed an MoU, to start up the 52 hectares of land owned by the NYSC in Ezillo, Ishielu Local Government Area of the state for massive production of rice, which the executive secretary and chief executive officer, NALDA, Prince Paul Ikonne, signed on behalf of his organization, while the Director General, NYSC, Brigadier General Shuaibu Ibrahim, signed for the corps.
As stated by Ikonne, with the youthful manpower that NYSC has, it was necessary for NALDA to tap into that resources to open up more hectares of farms across the country, while NALDA provides the expertise in agribusiness to galvanise the youthful strength of the corps for productive venture in agriculture that would make young graduates self-reliant, transformed into entrepreneurs, and also boost food security.
He also spell out that the rice is one of the commodities that NALDA has organize along with other agricultural commodities that will be embarked on, while he revealed that Integrated Farm Estate would soon come on stream in partnership with the corps, which will make corps members go into food production and income generation.
NYSC has the foot soldiers and every year they churn them out while NALDA has the land and the technical know-how, this understanding is for the man power and the technical know-how to come together in order to produce the much needed job opportunity and food security that Mr. President has been advocating for, for the country.
Nigeria is in dare need of creating job opportunities and this collaboration will contribute to the country’s GDP growth because when there are idle youth, you would have youth restiveness but when they are engaged you would see effectiveness so our visit here today is to seal our understanding that we already have going forward.
According to the Ikonne, the first phase of training corps members to be soil doctors was a success, and more will be trained soon to improve the current number of soil doctors.
He also stated that the first completed Integrated farm Estate in Katsina State will be commissioned by end of July, while others will take turns within 2021 after their completion as well.
The Director General of NYSC scheme, Shuaibu Ibrahim, on the partnership guaranteed that the corps members are ready to commence work on the farm immediately by deploying tractors to site for land clearing.
Ibrahim also applauded the NALDA chief executive for his passion for youth and their future, and the achievements and impact recorded by NALDA within one year.
He however advised that with the huge human capital the Corps has, there is need for more public and private sector organizations to take advantage by tapping into it towards boosting their businesses and growing the economy including reduction of youth unemployment, because the potential and skill of Corps members cannot be overemphasized.
Source: Vanguard news