Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Administration said it has concluded plans to tackle unemployment through various agricultural schemes in the territory in 2018.
Secretary, Agriculture and Rural Development Secretariat (ARDS), Stanley Nzekwe, who disclosed this in Abuja said the administration would partner the six FCT Area Councils to ensure youths in the area are enlisted into selected agricultural value chains.
He said the secretariat had revamped some of the agricultural programmes such as the Agriculture Development Programme (ADP) to provide extension services across all agricultural value chains.
He added: “This is to help them key into the various Federal Government programmes, to ensure their successful implementation in the FCT. One of such programmes is the Accelerated Agricultural Development Scheme. We have indicated our interest to be part of the scheme, which will take effect in 2018. It is coordinated by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and aims at creating 10,000 jobs for youths in the Area Councils.”
According to him, the secretariat would work with relevant stakeholders to ensure the actualisation of the scheme in record time.
He said: “Our mandate in the Agriculture and Rural Development Secretariat is tied to the Agricultural Promotion Policy (APP) of the Federal Government. This is predicated on working with key stakeholders to build an agri-business economy capable of delivering sustained prosperity by meeting domestic food security, generating exports and supporting sustainable income and job growth.”
He hinted that the secretariat had partnered Leventis Foundation on agricultural training for the youth in the FCT, which has produced agriprenuers who have set up their farms and other agro-allied companies, saying the programme has ensured that good agricultural practices are disseminated and adopted to enable smallholder farmers increase their yields and income.