By Ademola Babalola
In a bid to reposition and enhance resilience of livelihood in agricultural production in the state, Oyo state Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has partnered with an agricultural based organisation GESA Portal by empowering women and youths across the state.
The Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Hon. Ojemuyiwa Jacob Ojekunle in company of the acting Permanent Secretary, Dr. Peter Adegunwa and other top officials of the Ministry yesterday played host to an Agricultural based organization known as GESA Agricultural Portal in his office at the state secretariat, Ibadan at a coffee session where issues that bother on women and youths on agriculture were discussed in order to curb the avoidable exposure to vulnerability in the society.
Ojemuyiwa while addressing the organization stated that the issues raised by the group were germane and the ministry of agriculture was well prepared for these class of people considering their level of exposure to vulnerability in the society adding that women and youths are on top of the state government priority list in its drive to industrialize Oyo state through agricultural revolution.
He however expressed his joy and delight at the interactive meeting with the organization and their move to partner with the state government through the Ministry of Agriculture noting that the task before the present administration is a herculean one that require all hands to be on deck proactively including the organized private sector and assured that the ministry is ready for partnership that is aimed at empowering and investing in the people and their emancipation from joblessness and poverty.
He said “Any serious minded government at this crucial period will know that agriculture remains our best alternative to oil if we must improve on our income and we as a state realize this, that is why we already set machineries in motion to transform farm settlements into farm estates across all the zones in the state with provision of social amenities that will make life enjoyable for farmers. The program is about to kick start in the 14 local government areas in ibadan because we mean serious business, nobody is expected to farm with cutlass and hoes anymore as we are already in an era of modern farming where tractors do all the jobs and we believe this initiative of governor Makinde to industrialize the state through agric revolution will be a legacy that will last for generations because this was the same strategy initiated by baba Awolowo when farming was our main source of income.”
The lead consultant, The West African Observers Ms Lara Suleiman, Nyior Raphael, Ajala Muyiwa and the organization’s media director Mr. Muhammad Hameed who were present at the meeting noted that the present administration has shown clearly the political will and commitment to achieve food security, employment generation, and improve the economic fortunes of the state through agriculture, which was why the organization is interested in ways of mutual partnership with the state government to achieve the objectives of agric revolution in the state adding that her organization is ready to work closely with the ministry in areas of capacity building and empowerment of women and youths in Agriculture in order to become productive members of the society.
The Commissioner however thanked the team for their foresight and readiness to partner with the Ministry, he assured that the door of his office is always opened for organizations who wish to join the state government to reposition agriculture into a more prosperous sector in the state.