Katsina State Government, in collaboration with the 34 Local Government Areas (LGAs) in the state, on Friday supported 272 graduates with agricultural inputs to become self reliant.
The State Deputy Governor, Mannir Yakubu, said at the exercise that the beneficiaries were also trained on selected agricultural enterprises.
Represented by the Permanent Secretary in his office, Alhaji Aminu Bazariye, the deputy governor, who doubles as Commissioner for Agriculture, described the occasion as important.
“It is my honour to be here today on this important occasion of delivery of support to our unemployed graduates from the 34 LGAs of the state, who have expressed interest to participate in the agricultural sector.
“The beneficiaries who also include women, have been trained to become agripreneurs with the requisite skills to operate successfully.
“Fadama Graduate Unemployed Youth Support (Fadama GUYS) programme was first implemented in 2017 under Fadama lll additional financing,“ the deputy governor said.
According to him, the programme is funded by the World Bank with 251 unemployed graduates converted into Agric-preneurs alongside some selected agricultural value chains.
He mentioned the value chains as crop production, poultry, fishery, small and large ruminants rearing as well as Agro inputs and outputs selling enterprises across the state.
Yakubu further explained that “this resulted in job creation and increased agricultural production and other downstream activities across Katsina State.
“As a result of the achievement recorded in the implementation of the programme in the state, the government approved a proposal by Katsina State Fadama Coordination Office (KTSFCO) to replicate the programme, targeting 272 beneficiaries.
“The beneficiaries have been successfully trained on the management of the various enterprises of their choice.
“It includes poultry and fish production, goat rearing and ram fattening, and they are here to receive package of support to commence the operationalisation of their respective agri-businesses.
“I believe it will result in not only job creation for the unemployed graduates, but also secures food security in the state,” Yakubu said.
He called on the beneficiaries to ensure full utilisation of the support, as well as the training they received to ensure the success of their businesses and the programme in general.
“Also, this programme needs to be sustained by the incoming administration in order to create graduate agripreneurs in the state,” he said.
Earlier, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture, Alhaji Mas’ud Mustapha-Banye, said the gesture would assist them to become community based service providers.
“This programme was meant to empower them with the required skills as well as the needed capital to participate and contribute their quota in agricultural development of the state and the country at large.
“It was also meant to elicit an interest in their minds to explore the opportunities in the Agribusiness sector to become skilled as well as self-employed in the field of agricultural production and downstream activities,” he said.
Also, the Managing Director of Katsina State Agricultural and Rural Development Agency (KTARDA), Alhaji Abubakar Dabo, commended the efforts of President Muhammadu Buhari and Gov. Aminu Masari in youth development.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the beneficiaries were provided with goats, rams, fishery equipment, other items and N10,000 each.