The Federal Government has restated its commitment to creating jobs for millions of Nigerian youths through the E-wallet system in furtherance of its sustained socio-economic efforts to reduce unemployment, increase productivity and ensure sustainable development.
The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh, disclosed this during the flagging-off Agric Show/ Farms Exhibition organized as part of the activities to mark the October 16, 2018 World Food Day celebration in Abuja-Keffi, Nasarawa State.
The theme of this year’s agric show is ‘Strategies for Promoting Export of Agricultural Products’.
Ogbeh explained that the Green Alternative was an agriculture policy initiated by Federal Government aimed at promoting agriculture, attract private sector, create jobs for youth, ensure food security and provide value addition in agricultural sector.
The Minister also pointed out that zero hunger was achievable and called on all the partners and stakeholders to collaborate to ensure adequate funding, provision of seeds and fruits to stimulate agribusiness in order to ensure effective extension services and delivery.
Represented by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Dr Abdulkadir Mu’azu, the minister disclosed that the Green Alternative Policy had started yielding benefits to the economy; the rice revolution has granted food security to some extent; with huge reduction on rice importation and actualization of self-sufficiency in food production.
He stated that this year’s World Food Day Celebration coincided with the 70th anniversary of Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and 40th anniversary of its existence in Nigeria in which the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development in collaboration with the National Agriculture Foundation of Nigeria and All Farmers Association of Nigeria showcase the National Agricultural potentials to mark the celebration.
In his address at the occasion, the Country Representative of the United Nation Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in Nigeria, Mr. Suffyan Koroma, explained that the concept of Zero Hunger was broader in scope and not limited to the fight against undernourishment, as it aims also to provide people with the necessary nutrients for a healthy life.
On the FAO’s agenda of Zero Hunger by 2030 which is aimed at eradication of hunger and ensure sustainable development, Koroma disclosed that global hunger had rapidly grown in recent time, adding that the latest estimates of undernourished people in the World increased in 2017, for the third consecutive year.
For instance, he noted that last year, 821 million people or 11 percent of the world population suffered from hunger, lamenting that most of them are farmers living in poor rural areas of sub-Saharan African and Southeast Asia.
He expressed optimism that the FAO agenda of Zero Hunger would eradicate hunger and ensure sustainable development globally.
In his goodwill message, the National President of All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN), Kabiru Ibrahim commended the efforts of the ministry in making this year’s event a successful one, adding that farmers are ecstatic and encourage to do their utmost best to ensure actualization of food security and sustainable development.
He projected that the country would still make bomber harvest of crops despite the flooding experienced in many parts of the country this year.