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Agribusiness, Food Security: Oyo Govt., World Bank Collaborate, Train 66 Desk Officers, Facilitators Across 33 LG

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As part of strategic measures to improve on food production and security in the state, the Seyi Makinde led government in collaboration with the World Bank has has trained no fewer than 66 desk officers and facilitators selected from across the 33 local government areas of the state.

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This move, which held in Saki, Oke-ogun area referred to as the food basket of the state between July 14 and 15, was part of the state government’s 2-day intensive orientation training for the selected participants which will also impact positively on farm produce, scale up intervention, and ensure food production value chain.

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The training according to various speakers at the event will also put an end to the suffering of small scale farmers that were adversely affected by the covid-19 pandemic. Oyo state government on Friday completed 2 Day Orientation and Training for its desk and facilitators officers across the thirty three local government areas of the state.

Addressing participants at the event held at the Oyo State Agribusiness Development Agency (OYSADA) Headquaters Saki, the Director General of OYSADA who also doubles as the Executive Adviser to Governor Seyi Makinde on Oyo state Agribusiness, Dr Debo Akande stressed the need for beneficiaries of the training to understand that how privileged they are and the magnitude of opportunities that lies ahead of them.

Recall that Oyo State government recently held a critical Agribusiness Stakeholders conference in Ibadan, the state capital where key stakeholders, industry captains and agribusiness investors participated to cart a new course for the state agricultural sector.

As part of follow up measure to the recently held agribusiness stakeholders conference in Ibadan, Akande in his opening address via zoom explained that the Nigeria Covid-19 Action Recovery and Economic Stimulus (N-CARES) programmes is an Oyo State Government/World Bank assisted project with the main objective to enhance food supply chain.

Akande said, “N-CARES is expected to support the farmers that were affected by the outbreak of Covid-19 pandemic, the young farmers that are into small scale farming but deeply involved in the agricultural and agribusiness value chain, while our desk and facilitators that are here will be a soldier in supporting all these farmers and young people in all the 33 local government areas of the state.

He further said, “one of the reasons why many of you were selected as facilitators to be part of this agricultural scheme is because you are young, vibrant and dynamic, few of you I’m aware completed a training at Nasarawa state under the state Youth Employment Agribusiness Project (YEAP) initiative, and I’m also aware that only few of you like 20 out of over 3,000 that attended the training were selected for this program, this means that you are ICT guaranteed and you must adopt the use of technology a lot in driving this project at hand.

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“Don’t allow people to tell you that this is not how we used to do it during the days of FADAMA, or OYSADEP, this is not a FADAMA nor OYSADEP program, we are looking for new technology, new ideas, new innovations, we cannot continue to do things in same way and expect different result, there must be new approaches to deliver things for the the development of our dear state, and we are counting on you people to provide all these platforms and knowledge on farm approaches.”

“I want you to see this as a privilege and an opportunity to grow yourselves, you will be paid for this by the state government and to whom much is given, much is expected, accountability is key and very essential on this assignment given to you, be accountable to the state government, to the World Bank, to the people of Oyo State, and I want you to see this as an opportunity to contribute your own quota to the development of the state. Akande said.

Earlier in his welcome address, the Result Area 2 Project Coordinator in the state, Mr. Abimbola Bamgbola said, “N-Cares programmes are designed to restore the livelihood of the poor and vulnerable, maintaining food security and facilitating recovery of Moses which are some of the key objectives set out in the government’s economic sustainable plan to respond to the current economic crisis in Nigeria.

He noted that the orientation and training of the facilitators and desk officers in the state are to acquaint them with the implementation procedures and guidelines for the project.

He however commended the state Governor Engr. Seyi Makinde for commencement of the intervention programmes for the affected farmers in the state even before the Federal government intervention project.

He said, “I’m using this medium to acknowledge the administration of Engr. Seyi Makinde who before the intervention of Federal Government has been supporting the small holders farmers with agricultural inputs as palliatives to cushion the effect of covid-19 since year 2020 under the able leadership of his Executive Adviser, Dr. Debo Akande.”

In their separate remarks, participants at the event, Mr. Ogunyanju Akeem Babatunde, a desk officer from Atiba Local Government and Moses Odigie a Facilitator from Ibarapa East Local Government, and Miss Adenike Ariwoola also a desk officer from Ibadan North East, commended the state government for organizing such training.

They maintained that the program is a very laudable one, and also promised to make good use of the skills and knowledge acquired from the training to the development of the state.

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