Nigeria Agriculture Awards target youths into agric sector

The Central Committee of the Nigeria Agriculture Awards (NAA) has launched its maiden youth competition targeting youths in secondary schools, tertiary institutions and the National Youth Service Corps, to attract younger generation into the sector.

The initiative, coming in form of essay and project competition, with the theme: “Building A Crop Of Young Agropreneurs,” which attracted a sizable number of youths from different parts of the country, is aimed at evolving a generation of youths that would effectively contribute to the development of the sector.

During the awards presentation in Lagos, at the weekend, in the NAA Youth Project Competition, Team Smart Farms, comprising of Mamud Abdulrasaq, Balogun Idris Abayomi, and Yusuf Yusuf Falawiyo, emerged overall winners; Team Digital-Ogunbiyi Yusuf Gbenga, Salawu Saheed and Abiodun Ogundijo, emerged as the first runners-up; while Team UNILAG-Adoh Tobechukwu, Moses Adeyemo Seun and Bamidele Wilson, emerged as second runners-up. They went home with N1m, N500, 000, and N250, 000, respectively.

In the NAA Essay Competition, Ndebilite Amarachi, emerged winners with N250, 000 prize, while the first runners-up, Marvellous Adelaja, got N150, 000.

Chief Executive Officer, AgroNigeria, Richard-Mark Mbaram said NAA saw the need to bring youths on board because it realised that they are the missing developmental keys to the chain that is called the value chain in agriculture.

“When you have the bulk of farmers and players in the agricultural space at around the age of 60 and they are on their way out, then you have got a challenge on your hand. Yet you have to feed more people and you realise you have to do something very desperate and here we are desensitising them from joining the agricultural space. We, therefore, decided that we need to bring in a component that has to do with youths.

“We said we would have two categories, which is tertiary category and secondary category. For the tertiary category, we told them to bring themselves into maximum of three groups, by identifying a problem area in agriculture space and proffer solutions to it and give us the timeline their intervention will make headway in the sector.”



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