Lagos State government says it is collaborating with the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) and the Africa Projects Development Centre (APDC) to train 13,548 youths in the state in the various agricultural value chains in a five-stage model within the next five years.
The State Commissioner for Agriculture, Ms. Abisola Olusanya, disclosed this recently at the opening of the Young Africa Works Agribusiness Internship Orientation Training held at the Lagos State Agricultural Development Authority, Oko-Oba, Agege.
She noted that participants of the training programme would be trained to build skills and secure fulfilling work opportunities within the agriculture value chains.
Olusanya noted that the Young Africa Works Project of the IITA was a strategic approach to agribusiness training to arouse the interest of youths and teenagers in the agricultural space to enable them make a decent living out of it.
According to her, IITA would in total provide skills to over 40,000 youths and enable 242,724 young women and men across Nigeria to secure dignified and fulfilling work in the agricultural value chains within the five-year model, adding that in Lagos, a total of 13,548 youths including 3,120 secondary school students would participate in the programme.
“I am particularly delighted to be in your midst today on the occasion of the opening ceremony of the Young Africa Works Agribusiness Internship Orientation Training being implemented by the IITA and the APDC in partnership with the Lagos State government.
“I have been told that the Young Africa Works is an approach to agribusiness training and start-up for Nigerians, which is focused on improving the livelihoods of youths and teenagers by impacting in them the needed skills to do viable agribusiness within their communities.
“I have also been reliably informed that IITA seeks to provide skills to over 40,000 youths and enable 242,724 young women and men to secure dignified and fulfilling work in agricultural value chains in a five-stage model within a period of five years.
Specifically, for Lagos State, a total of 13,548 youths including 3,120 secondary school students are expected to participate in this programme,” the commissioner averred.
Olusanya disclosed that the state government was particularly interested in the partnership as it was in tune with the goal of recruiting more youths, teenagers and women into the agricultural space in order to replace the aging farmers as well as to increase food production, create employment opportunities, alleviate poverty and boost income generation in the State.
She stated that programmes such as the Lagos Agripreneurship Programme (LAP), the Lagos Food Production Centre, the Schools’ Agricultural Programme (SAP), the Summer School Programme, the World Bank-assisted FADAMA and APPEALS Projects have been carrying out series of trainings, especially for youths and women to ensure increased food security in the state and reduce its level of dependence on other states for food.