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News - South West - Lagos Updated: March 27, 2024

Engage youths in agribusiness to curb food insecurity — Obasanjo to FG

By Philip Adeboye
March 27, 2024
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Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has urged the federal government to involve young people in agricultural ventures to create employment opportunities for unemployed youths and address food insecurity. 

Obasanjo delivered this message on Tuesday during Nigeria's 9th International Trade Exhibition and Conference on Agrofood, Plastics, Printing, and Packaging held in Lagos.

The conference had the theme: “Nigeria’s Technology Investments: Driving growth in Agrofood, Plastics, printing and packaging.”

Obasanjo said if the government and the private sector could get restive youths employed, there would be fewer people involved in banditry, kidnapping and other criminal activities.

“Even though, when we talk about agriculture, not many of them will want to go to the farm; they will rather go for white collar jobs.

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“However, the youth need to get their hands dirty and feet wet in the agricultural business.

“If we are able to give them employment, then there will be fewer of them getting involved in banditry, kidnapping, and other criminal activities,” he said.

Obasanjo said the need for agribusiness was to ensure food security, nutrition security, employment and wealth creation, poverty elimination and income generation, particularly foreign exchange earnings.

The Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, Abubakar Kyari, said the federal government was collaborating with stakeholders across the board for the necessary transformation in the food system required for immediate and long-term interventions.

Kyari said this was in response to the declaration of emergency on food and water by President Bola Tinubu; the food security pillar of the Renewed Hope Agenda.

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The minister said the government was also working on improving efficiency in the value chains through mechanisation.

He said the recent MoU with John Deere to increase the number of tractors by 10,000 in the country at 2,000 per annum was one such effort.

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