No fewer than 100 youths are to benefit from the Anambra State Government’s soft loans for talent-hunt in the fields of Agriculture, Science and Technology.
Dr Onyeka Ibezim, the Special Adviser to Gov. Willie Obiano on Youth Mobilisation and Empowerment, said this on Monday in Awka at the finals of the one month talent-hunt.
Ibezim said the programme was to empower youths who had interest and innovative prowess in the fields of Agriculture, Science and Technology.
He said that individuals that made the final list would be granted N500,000 soft loan and N5million to cooperatives to set up small scale farms and artisan businesses.
The governor’s aide whose office was coordinating the programme said funds for the young entrepreneurs would be provided by the Anambra State Small Business Agency (ASBA).
“We have been focusing on plans to empower the youths and they have been factored into the various pillars of this administration.
“This time, we are focusing on exceptional talents in the Agriculture, Science and Technology sectors; these are youths who had done well in the various local government areas and have qualified for the finals.
“They will be supported in farming areas such as: fisheries, poultry, vegetable farming, even root crop farming where they had excelled.
“The loan that we shall give to these young talented farmers and artisans will be fully guaranteed by the Anambra State Government,” he said.
Ibezim said the talent-hunt was open to all youths irrespective of educational qualification and that the next phase would target youths with prospects in the entertainment and sport sectors.
Mr Emeka Iloghalu, an expert in fisheries and a member of panel of judges, said he was impressed with the attitude of the participants to farming.
Iloghalu said youths stood to make wealth from engaging in modern agriculture which was high yielding and in great demand.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the talent-hunt was collaboration by the Anambra Ministries of Agriculture, Science and Technology and Culture and Tourism. (NAN)