The Federal Government is to establish 20 farm training institutes in 20 locations in the country to boost agriculture and create jobs for the teeming population.
Dr Sayyadi Ruma, the Minister of Agriculture and Water Resources, told News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Monday that the scheme, tagged â€œWealth creationâ€, would guarantee 1,000 jobs per centre annually for youths.
â€œEach graduating participant is likely to provide employment opportunity to more than 20 job seekers by extension.
â€œIt means that each centre has the capacity to provide direct and indirect employment to more than 200,000 Nigerians in a year,â€ he said.
According to him, youths participating in the scheme will undergo intensive training and engage in an agro_enterprise activity of their choice.
In the end, the beneficiaries would leverage on the available credit facilities to establish their own choice of business.
Ruma said that each of the centres would focus on one or two different commodities that have comparative advantage.
He said the centres would be private sector driven and also be employers of labour while promoting the development of specific commodities.
The minister said the initiative was a deliberate effort by the government to recruit youths into agriculture.
Ruma noted that the farming population was aging and not too eager to imbibe modern technological approaches to agricultural development.
â€œGovernment cannot shy away from the development of agriculture as it remains the key component of Nigerian economy.
â€œIt is the largest sector providing employment and livelihood for over 70 per cent of the populace,â€ he observed.
With 1,000 jobs each centre is expected to create, the 20 centres will guarantee a total of 20,000 jobs for Nigerian youths.