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Encouraging Youths Participation In Agriculture by Nobody: 8:32am On Aug 12, 2015
Youth in a country represents the most active segment of the population and the engine room of its productivity.

This is why integrating this group of the population into the socio-economic and political agenda or program is considered pivotal for development initiative anywhere in the world.

A large portion of this category of people is either in schools or engaged as artisans or traders while a larger proportion remains unemployed.

The majority of these unemployed youths has their eyes on getting paid jobs, especially white collar jobs, which are non existent.

According to the Nigerian bureau of statistics, the national unemployment rate as at 2013 is 23 percent with the youths accounting for more than 70 percent.

Agriculture has been considered one veritable tool to address the challenge posed by unemployment in the country.

The government considers it a key solution going by the fact that agriculture was the main stay of the country’s economy prior to the oil boom era.

The current downturn in the economy occasioned by dwindling revenue has further strengthened the drive to make agriculture the power house of national development.

Hitherto, the government initiated various programs such as green revolution, operation feed the nation, and agriculture transformation agenda as part of efforts to encourage youths to embrace agriculture.

State governments also established an agriculture development program to boost food production and increase agricultural productivity while agricultural development banks were set up as instrument to boost Agric financing in the country.

These efforts are all commendable, but majority of the youths in the country has maintained a negative attitude towards farming.

This is because youths have over the years associated white collar job with affluence and agriculture with low esteem.

Corruption and materialism have also tended to encourage youths to believe that they can become rich with little or no labour.

Government will need to painstakingly and with concerted efforts change this orientation among youths in the country this campaign should start from schools.

They need to be supplied Agric equipment and encouraged to have farms.

Government should encourage local production of agricultural equipment by developing local artisan industry, which can be a veritable source of employment for school leavers.

Availability of equipment would ease the drudgery associated with agriculture thus encouraging youths to take to farming.

In addition, state governments should establish agro-training centers across the country and make access to funds easy for young enterprising farmers, as a form of inducement.

Moreover, the three tiers of government should continue to synthesize youths in the country on the gains derivable in agricultural practice.

As we look forward to see the next minister of agriculture i urge president Muhammadu Buhari to appoint someone with agricultural background.

Written by Olusola Otunuga.

edited by Ejikeme Augustine Eloka.

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Re: Encouraging Youths Participation In Agriculture by TheUnbeatable(m): 10:33am On Aug 12, 2015
Nice write up.

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