Obasanjo backs agric-driven economic development
Former President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo Tuesday backed President Muhammadu Buahri on his attempts to revamp the nation’s economy through the non-oil sector, particularly agriculture, which he said would redirect the economy of Nigeria from oil.
Obasanjo stated this when he spoke to journalists shortly after his visit to the Oba of Benin, His Royal Majesty, Oba Ewuare II, in Edo State.
He also said that it had become clear that agriculture was the only sustainable business in the country capable of withstanding any season.
“We have no other sustainable business other than agriculture that can keep us going, come rain or shine,” he said.At the Palace, he informed the monarch that he was in Benin to inspect a multi-million dollar farm project owned by an Edo-based businessman, Capt. Hosa Okunbor (retd.), and located in Ikpoba-Okha Local Government Area of the state.
“The Oba, whom I have known for a long time, remains the same. So, I am very happy to be here and proud of him.”Oba Ewuare II said that he was delighted to receive the former president in his palace, barely a week after receiving a former Head of State, Gen. Yakubu Gowon (retd.).
The monarch noted that being a successful farmer, Obasanjo would inspire the agro-allied industry in Edo to grow.The Oba also said agricultural development was the way forward for Nigeria, even as he reiterated his earlier calls to the federal government to create the Gelegele export-free zone in Ovia North-East Local Government Area.
He also assured that he would not let its people down, but do his best to cater for their welfare.Earlier, Obasanjo paid a courtesy visit to Governor Godwin Obaseki, and told journalists in a humorous manner that “I come salute Governor and Governor don pick my salute.”
Recall that Okunbor recently started a multi-billion naira agro-allied business in the State in partnership with a Mexican firm, Wells Sam Carlos Farm worth $750million (about N150 billion).The farm, designed to create 85,000 jobs in the State, will create 25,000 direct jobs and 60,000 indirect jobs.