Fashola Unveils Co-Operative College, 60 Refrigerated Meat Vans
Jul 10, 2012 - The Lagos State Government on Tuesday received the commendations of the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Akinwunmi Adesina for using agriculture and food security to mitigate the social security challenges associated with the state's mega city status, just as the Governor, Mr Babatunde Fashola (SAN) declared that Nigeria cannot develop until her people go back to the farms.
Speaking before the official commissioning of the Lagos State Cooperative College, Oko-Oba, Agege, launch of 60 Eko Refrigerated Meat Vans and the flag off of the Growth Enhancement Support Scheme which took place at the Johnson Agiri Complex, Oko- Oba, Agege, the Minister said the road map policy document –titled Strategic Programme for Accelerated Agricultural Growth (SPAAG) which relates all the key agricultural sub-sectors with the singular objective of improving agricultural output, productivity and emphasis on wealth and job creation bears eloquent testimony to the state's commitment.
"Lagos State's plan to create jobs while addressing food security is highly commendable. The "Rice for Job" which is the pioneering rice initiative for Lagos State has moved area of rice cultivation in Lagos from less than 20 hectares to its current 250 hectares and counting. In a sector that is experiencing aging workforce, Lagos State has done well to attract youths and sustain their interest. Employment record from the State has shown an increase from 300 youths benefitting from the State Agricultural Youth Empowerment Scheme (YES) project in 2007 to 1500 in 2010", Dr Adesina stated.
The State Governor, Mr Babatunde Fashola (SAN) noted that now is the time for Nigerians to think very simply but deeply that the country must tailor its demands to meet its economy because each time the people hold a party and consume foreign food items to the detriment of locally produced items, a foreign economy is being boosted.
The Governor said the nation already possesses the land, water, men and now the policy to let her embrace agriculture and restore it to its pride of place, adding that even when anyone makes money the first urge to be satisfied is hunger.
The Governor supported the Minister's position that the rice that are imported from Malaysia and Thailand are stored rice with no nutritional values to Nigerians, adding that those who export it do not eat such extensively preserved rice but depend on the equivalent of the Ofada rice which Nigerians have abandoned.