All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu has assured Nigerian farmers of his commitment to invest heavily across the agricultural value chain if elected president next year.
Tinubu gave the assurance on Thursday when he received farmers from the country’s six geopolitical zones at his campaign office in Abuja, noting that investment in the country’s agricultural sector must be a priority as Nigeria holds the key to global food security.
Tinubu, who left his party’s campaign office for an emergency engagement after a brief meeting with other farmer groups, left behind his running mate, Kashim Shettima, to speak on his behalf. to other groups of farmers, who came under the umbrella of Asiwaju. Farmers Forum.
Shettima revealed that there are already strategic plans in his new administration’s roadmap to fortify the country’s agricultural sector through the adoption of intermediary partnerships and improved agricultural practices that would ensure increased yields and better opportunities. jobs for young people.
He expressed concern over the low yields suffered by Nigerian farmers, resulting in huge annual losses compared to the bumper harvests their counterparts in other parts of the world are getting, saying there were also plans to address the constraints of marketing to promote exports of agricultural products from Nigeria to parts of Europe.
He said, “The new Tinubu administration will invest heavily across the agricultural value chain. The whole mantra is about increasing performance.
“The whole mantra is to increase yield and we cannot achieve this without adopting or adopting intermediate and improved agricultural practices.
“I want to assure you on behalf of our principal, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, that we will align ourselves with you.
“The future is yours. The trajectory of global food security is in Africa and it is Nigeria that will mark or spoil that trajectory. The future of Africa, I mean that of the black race, rests with the people of this country. In 2050, Nigeria would be the third most populous country on the planet, with a population of over 400 million. We have the possibility of transforming the anticipated demographic trajectory into demographic dividends, otherwise it would be a demographic catastrophe that would consume us all.
“We will work for you by the grace of God. The future belongs to you. Go inside the slums and meet the common man, the anger is evident on their faces.
“We must work as a people, as a family for the good of our people. We have a problem of poverty and inequality in Nigeria and Nigerian has no reason to be poor because ours is one of the great oil and gas nations blessed with huge arable land with huge solid minerals buried under the ground.
“Not only tin and columbite in Plateau and Nasarawa where you till the ground, they also have a lot of mineral resources. More importantly, we have the human resources, we have the market to sell our products,” Shettima said.
He, however, called on Nigerians to look beyond the statistics constantly presented by opposition political parties and vote for people with proven track records.
He said: “This is why next year’s elections will be different from all other elections. We must emphasize competence, capacity, more than any other criteria.
“We will work for the establishment of a lasting peace in this country. More importantly, we will focus on the grassroots social economy empowerment agenda with agriculture as the centerpiece.
“So we have to work on the people and there is no other better person with the skills to transform this greater nation than Asiwaju,” he added.
Earlier in his presentation, the team leader, Mr. Retson Tedheke, who also served as the National Coordinator, Nigerian Famers Group and Cooperative Society (NFGCS), said his main objective was to encourage more young people to go into agriculture but the government at all. levels must be willing to commit more resources to the sector by providing better incentives to young farmers to make farming more attractive to them.
He, however, promised to team up with his colleagues in the sector to mobilize thousands of young people across rural communities in the country for the actualization of the Tinubu-Shettima presidential project.
“We have the strength, we have the energy, we have the ability, age is on our side and we will do it,” Retson said.