By Onomiguren Agbamu
As part of its commitment to boost food production in the state, Delta State Government has flag-off the handing out of farm input support packages and cash to beneficiaries of the 2022 Youth Agricultural and Entrepreneurs Programme (Brown YAGEP) in cassava cultivation.
Addressing the beneficiaries, Delta state governor, who was ably represented by the chief of staff, Hon. Festus Agas noted that, “the sole aim of every government is to ensure that life is more meaningful for its people, saying Delta state is a developing economy.
He maintained that, the state governor, senator Dr. ifeanyi Okowa in 2015, during his inaugural speech promised and made a covenant with youths and women to create job which he (Okawa) has kept to date.
He revealed that the state government has trained and established 12,800 entrepreneurs through its various job creation programmes.
He, called on the beneficiaries to make judicious use of the farm inputs and to be good ambassadors of Governor Okowa’s drive to make life more meaningful for them.
On his part, the Commissioner for Agriculture,and Natural Resources,Dr. Godfrey Enitan, reiterated the state Governor’s passion to boost Agriculture and food security in the state, just as he advised the beneficiaries to be positive minded and utilize the farm inputs support package to improve their livelihoods, especially in the Agricultural value chain.
Adding, the Hon Commissioner for Youth, comrade. Ifeanyi Egwunyenga tasked the beneficiaries to have the right mind-set to use the support package to produce results that would enhance their lives and those of their families.
In his statement “this is a seed, the determinant of your productivity is your mind, it is how you see this support will determine whether it yields fruit or not, seed is for sowing; it is not for eating, from the produce of your seed, you will eat during harvest”.
Earlier, the Chief Job and Wealth Creation Officer and Head of the Delta State Job and Head Creation Bureau, Prof. Eric Eboh, said that a total of 1,520 YAGEP beneficiaries were trained, established and supported in various Agricultural enterprises including poultry, crop production, piggery, fish production, agro-processing and agribusiness, from 2015 to 2021.
He noted that the 2022 YAGEP cycle which is the 7th cycle commenced with Orientation and Farm Enterprise Training (OFET)) last week with a target to cover a total of 300 Brown YAGEPreneurs in crop and poultry production with 142 of them already enrolled in cassava cultivation.
According to him, “the handing-out of farm inputs support package, today, follows the orientation and farm enterprise training for YAGEP beneficiaries in cassava cultivation, the farm inputs support package comprises agrochemicals, knapsack sprayer, fertilizers, cash support of N100,000 for farm labour and cassava cutting of 50 bundles to each YAGEPreneur.
He explained that the YAGEP beneficiaries would be trained on best agricultural practices in efficient, profitable and innovative cassava enterprise management with the overall aim to help them become better agricultural entrepreneurs in the following months of the cassava farming cycle.
Speaking with journalists shortly at the closure of the event, Mr. Peter Williams and Gloria Nwanokwai, beneficiaries of the farm inputs expresses their gratitude to the state government for the initiative, support, promising to use the farm inputs support package to expand their farm enterprises and to boost food security in the state.