The Federal Government of Nigeria is targeting 1,200 Agricultural Equipment Hiring Centres (AEHCs) by end of 2016, says President Goodluck Jonathan, reports NaijaAgroNet.
Speaking to NaijaAgroNet recently in Abuja, the nation’s capital, at the launch of Youth Employment in Agriculture Programme (YEAP), President Jonathan also disclosed that before December 31, 2014 some 80 Agricultural Equipment Hiring Enterprises (AEHEs) will spring up.
He explained that AEHEs launch by his leadership is motivated to pave the way for the future agriculture programme pleasant to the youth generation who will see agriculture as business and devoid of undue hardwork will adequate fruit for their labour and as part of effort by Federal Government to mechanize agriculture.
Jonathan also explained that AEHEs is a private sector driven programme that will provide mechanized services for farmers across the country.
“While over the next two years, a total of 1,200 of the Agricultural Equipment Hiring Centers would be established across the nation,” he said.
To achieve the drive to encourage young commercial farmers, Jonathan told NaijaAgroNet, concerted effort must be made to take the hoes and cutlasses away from the farms and replace them with tractors and mechanized equipment.
“The Youth Employment in Agriculture Programme (YEAP), which I am flagging off today, will further change the face of Nigeria’s agriculture. YEAP has been designed to create a new generation of 750,000 young commercial farmers and agribusiness leaders (Nagropreneurs) that will make Nigeria’s agriculture more efficient, profitable and competitive. They will become the CEOs of their own farms and agribusinesses, create jobs in the rural areas and reverse the trend of high rural to urban migration. They will help to change the mindset of the younger generation on agriculture,” he declared.
These Nagropreneurs, President Jonathan said, will become models and champions for our newly launched National Agriculture Schools Initiative, as they project to younger school children, the image of agriculture as an attractive and wealth creating sector.
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