Ondo State Governor Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, says his administration will continue to devote necessary resources to agricultural sector in order for it to take its rightful position as the state cash cow.
The Governor spoke as the special guest of honor at the 32nd South West Research Extension Farmers Input Linkage System (REFILS) which took place at The Institute Of Agricultural Research and Training, Moore Plantation, Ibadan, Oyo State.
He said the only way Nigeria can catch up with other nations which have developed the sector to an enviable level is not to take agriculture as a vocation but as a business.
Speaking under the theme “Promoting Agribusiness and Strengthening Stakeholders Linkages in Adapting to Climate Change” the Governor represented by the Commissioner for Agriculture Otunba Gboyega Adefarati, described the event as timely, considering the need to handle and treat agriculture in all ramifications as a business in order to prevent or minimize the damages associated with the adverse effects of climate on Agriculture.
Arakunrin Akeredolu did not fail to use the occasion to highlights the achievements of his administration since he came to office in spite of its limited.
According to the Governor his government has paid all counterpart funds for all externally funded Agricultural project/ programme that will benefit our people such as Fadama 111 Additional Financing Project where One hundred and Seventy five Million Naira was paid in 2017 and Ninety three million naira in 2018.
Arakunrin Akeredolu who held his audience spell bound said in addition to these his administration has established a 2000 hectares Cocoa Plantation at Ijugbere Owo for youths, rehabilitated the 1,744 hectares Oda Cocoa Estate and shared it to sharecroppers for proper management, partnered Chinese Firm Win – Win Textile Company to establish a textile factory at industrial pack Ore which has commenced operations.
Furthermore Ondo state Government is collaborating with Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation NNPC through PPP for the establishment of a Cassava to ethanol Factory at Okeluse, Ifon, establishment of Egg Powder Production Industry at Emure- ile in Owo,programmed to commence operations this year.
In line with the aims of Sustainable Development Goals Akeredolu said the state is partnering several Donor agencies / Development partners to bring into the state life transformation projects/programmes such as IFAD and The Niger Delta Development Commission.
The high point of the 3-day event which was attended by stakeholders in the agric extension services in South West and beyond witnessed presentation of technical papers & demonstration of latest techniques in extension services was the presentation of Awards.