Governor Babatunde Fashola revealed this at the graduation ceremony of 285 youths from the state Agriculture Youth Empowerment Scheme, AGRIC-YES in Epe.
Speaking at the ceremony, the governor said that the progress and achievements recorded by the AGRIC-Yes programme in such a short time showed that what is needed to boost food production in the country was “a clear idea, a clear plan and unflinching commitment to implement those plans”.
In his words, “If we do not produce food, the factories will shut down, if we do not produce food and go back to the land, there will be no rubber to make tyres to even drive those luxury cars. That was the simple idea behind the AGRIC-YES, to go back to the land, to create dignity and honour with the land so that young people will have a new focus and a new beginning”.
Earlier in his welcome address, the Lagos State Commissioner for Agriculture and Cooperatives, Prince Gbolahan Lawal, had charged the graduands to use the skills which they have acquired to be the change they want to see in the world.
The graduates who are now full-fledged agropreneurs, six months after undergoing an intensive training on different aspects of agriculture, also expressed joy at the opportunity given to them by the state government.
In her remarks on behalf of other graduands, one of the best graduating students, Miss Oloko Olanrewaju, expressed gratitude to the governor for the privilege given to them, pointing out that they have been well trained during the course and promising to put their best to achieve food security in the country.
Also present at the ceremony were Secretary to the State Government, Oluranti Olugbile, Commissioner for Education, Olayinka Oladunjoye, Chairman House Committee on Information, Segun Olulade, members of the State House of Assembly, Chairmen of Local Governments, parents and guardians as well as relations of graduands and other stakeholders.
After the graduation ceremony, Governor Babatunde Fashola took time out to commission several projects in the farm settlement: 32 tonnes capacity quality cassava flour factory, 50,000 capacity automated 5-unit broiler houses, ram, cattle ranch and feed mill including 2.34km network of road within the institute and a 200 units two bedroom apartment for the farmers