The Federal Government on Wednesday said it was going into a partnership with the Israeli and Argentine governments to train Niger Delta ex-agitators in agriculture so as to boost food production and boost the nation’s economy.
The special adviser to the President on Niger Delta Affairs, General Paul Boroh, disclosed this in a meeting with representatives from the two foreign countries in Abuja.
Boroh explained that the major objective of the partnership was to tap from the expertise of the two countries and enable the ex-agitators to earn a sustainable means of livelihood. According to Boroh, the two countries have what it takes to make agriculture in Nigeria a big business and provide food security for the nation.
Boroh said, “I have been to Israel severally and seen the huge fortune recorded in farming there. There are a lot of big farms there and I want my people under this programme to maximise the window of opportunity in agriculture to earn a living.
‘’Currently as Nigeria shifts its dependence from oil to agriculture, it is important to key into it and train people to be able to catch up with the times’’.
Also speaking, Argentina’s Ambassador to Nigeria, Gustavo Alejandro Dzugala, said the partnership with Nigeria would bring about a major benefit in agriculture given the vast knowledge and expertise of his country in the area.
“Argentina has a long experience in the agricultural scheme and is also willing to map out strategies and approach which will give ex agitators the necessary tools for capacity development’’.
‘’We are here today because there is an interest by the Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta Affairs to train ex-agitators on the expansion and diversification of the Nigerian economy through rugged drive of agriculture’’.
‘’We are done with the first stage of approval as we evolve we hope that the project will get approval to be implemented, which will mean that we will commence next year in full scale, there are plans for it to be included in the 2017 budget’’.
‘’Our economy is based on agriculture and Nigeria economy can grow to be like that, we have involved experts from both sides for strategic planning, the process will determine the financial commitment of Argentina’’.
In the same vein, Yaron Aharon from Israel said the essence of the collaboration was to address the authorities of PAP on how to use the knowledge and skills of Israeli farmers to better the lives of Nigerian youths and improve the economy of the country.
‘’ It is essential to use the vast resources and human capacity Nigerians are blessed with to be self reliant. I choose Amnesty because they have shown their intention to tap from the great experience we have come with’’.
‘’We are not limited by numbers or time; it is a programme that can take months or even years and we are ready to ride you all the way as long as you give us the resources to carry that out, our major target now is to train the trainers then they in turn will train others which will give room for local expansion’’.
Source: <Vanguard NG>