-Blank NEWS Online (NIGERIA) –By Albert OGRAKA:
THE Delta State Youth Agricultural Entrepreneurs Programme (YAGEP) beneficiaries in the 2020/2021 Crop Production Cycle have been given support packages to sustain their entrepreneurship endeavorus.
The beneficiaries of the farm inputs who are all youth farmers, have been trained by the Job and Wealth Creation Bureau to excel in their agricultural enterprises by becoming employers of labour and to boost food security in the state.
Addressing the beneficiaries, the Chief Job and Wealth Creation Officer of the bureau, Prof Eric Eboh, said the support package was in line with the vision of the State government to offer training, create jobs and wealth, and to support youths to become successful and gainfully self-employed entrepreneurs.
“Yesterday, you were participants at the Orientation and Farm Enterprise Training organized for you by the bureau. Today, the farm enterprise training workshop is being followed with provision of support packages to you. Depending on the type of farm enterprise, the support package includes critical production inputs such as fertilizer, crop agrochemicals, and cash for land preparation, seedlings, weeding and harvesting,” he remarked.
He assured them that they would be exposed to and tutored in best agricultural practices in farm enterprise management, innovative production technologies and profitable agribusiness throughout the production cycle.
On his part, the YAGEP Programme Supervisor, Mr Sam Ndikanwu, advised the beneficiaries on the proper methods of application of the farm inputs such as the fertilizers and agro-chemicals.
He pointed out that they were receiving the first tranche of input comprising five to 12 bags of fertilizers such as NPK 15:15:15; Urea; Mariate of Potash and Single Super Phosphate and Pre-Emergence and Post-Emergence Agro-chemicals each based on their agricultural enterprise.
While emphasizing that 30 beneficiaries in Asaba and its environs were receiving the inputs in Asaba, he said other beneficiaries would receive theirs in centers nearest to them either in Agbor, Kwale, Ughelli or in Warri Centers.
According to him, “The Brown YAGEPreneurs are not freshers; they are used to application of agro-chemicals and have received adequate training on the application of these fertilizers. Agriculture is time specific, hence we are giving out these inputs during the raining season. Our crops are rain feed and this is the planting season. We are doing this now to get good yield in order to boost food security in the state.”
Onwudike Stephen (Oshimili North LGA) in Plantain Production while expressing gratitude to the State Government for the kind gesture, said he received 14 bags of fertilizers and 5 agro-chemicals to be followed by a cash component as his support package.
“These will help me to expand my farm enterprise, boost my production capacity and to engage more youths to work with me. I advise youths to go into agriculture because agriculture is key to food security, employment and national development” he enthused.
Also, Uwadia Stephanie (Ndokwa West LGA) in Cassava Production affirmed that the orientation and training coupled with the support package by the bureau had improved her mentality about farming, adding that she was motivated to improve her farming technique.