“Let’s train more youth in agribusiness,” Senator of Oyo South calls
On 1 November, Senator Kola Balogun of Oyo South senatorial district visited IITA to explore partnership opportunities in the agricultural development
of Oyo South senatorial district, Oyo State.
He was welcomed by Kenton Dashiell, IITA Deputy Director General, Partnerships for Delivery who said, “We have partnerships with federal and state governments, and private organizations.”
Senator Balogun expressed his desire to justify his mandate as a representative of the people, by supporting government policies for wealth creation. He said, “We must bring the dividends of democracy to our people through an efficient and effective service delivery system.” According to him, capacity building, value addition, and youth and women empowerment are some of his plans for the senatorial district, but his main objective is “to use agriculture to drive the economy.”
Dashiell told the Senator of previous failed attempts at partnering with federal ministeries on organizing trainings in agribusiness for 1000 youth in every state. In response to this, Senator Balogun said, “I also serve as the Deputy Chairman of the House Committee on Youth. It will not be difficult for me to drive the proposal into fruition.” He said he will immediately begin to liaise with federal ministries of agriculture and finance, as well as seek the support of the senate president on how 1000 youth will be empowered through the trainings in agribusiness.
Currently, Oyo State is one of the largest producers of cassava in Nigeria. According to Alfred Dixon, Director of the Development and Delivery office, “Oyo State can become a model for others if agriculture and agribusiness are capitalized upon.”
To this end, a roadmap to actualizing agribusiness in Oyo South is being developed. Senator Balogun is confident that this partnership will yield the desired results.