No fewer than 114 youths are to get about 600 Hectares for crop farming in Ekiti State under the Agriculture Service Provider Programme.
The initiative is a collaboration between the State Government and the Agro Nigerian Ventures Limited in Ado Ekiti.
Under the ASPP, at least five graduates from each of the16 Local Governments in the state had been trained in farming, especially crops.
Speaking in Ado Ekiti, the Chairman of ANVL, Mathew Ajayi Aderiye, said the collaboration would improve food security in the nation and reduce unemployment among youths.
“We have just trained the 114 youths at the Federal Polytechnics, Ado Ekiti. The programme has changed the thinking of these trainees towards farming. They have signed a Memorandum of Understanding with crops association that wants to make use of their services once they get their power tiller machine.
“They have also signed an agreement with off takers – companies that want to buy their products at harvest – especially maize.
“A company has approached us for 800,000 tonnes of maize and they are looking for people to plant them. They offered the youths to plant two hectares of maize for them. The company will supply the seedlings; so Ekiti would soon become the food basket of the nation.”
Aderiye appealed to the government to give more priorities to farming because Nigeria is blessed with good climate and potential to be among the world best food producers.