275 N-Delta youths benefit from NAOC JV agric training, empowerment
No fewer than 275 youths in Niger Delta region have benefited from the Nigerian Agip Oil Company (NAOC) and its Joint Venture agro skills acquisition through the Green Rivers Project scheme .
The Vice Chairman/Managing Director of NAOC, Massimo Insulla, said the special agricultural scheme was introduced in 2016 to meet the present day economic and social realities and to bridge the gap between the aging farmers and make agriculture attractive to youths.
Insulla, who spoke at the graduation ceremony for pioneer class of 2017/2018 NAOC-JV Agro-Skills Acquisition Training Programme in Port Harcourt at the weekend, said the scheme was introduced to increase employment generation.
He added that the choice of agriculture for the empowerment of youths was inline with the Federal Government’s vision on diversification.
The trainees were drawn from the four states of NAOC operations, Rivers, Bayelsa, Delta, and Imo States were trained in Skills such as fisheries, poultry, livestock and crop farming.
The Managing Director added, that the scheme was introduced to make the youths become self -reliant, and ultimately employers of labour.
He added, “This programme will create an enabling environment for youths to embrace agricultural value chains as a business venture, equip the trainees with relevant agro-skills necessary for the establishment and efficient management of small -scale agro industries”
Insulla charged the trainees to utilize the opportunity and transform their economic fortune and that of their communities.
Also speaking, the Group General Manager NAPIMS, Rowland Ewubare represented by the deputy Manager, Public Affairs, Mrs. Clementina Arubi lauded NAOC for the initiative and urged the trainees to make good use of the opportunity given to them.
He said, importation would reduce , foreign exchange increased, and more jobs created with encouragement into agriculture.
On his part, the Group Chief Executive Officer of Oando, Wale Tinubu, said the essence of the scheme was to reinforce that agriculture is not merely crop production, but includes production of food, utilizing the abundant land and water that the communities have been blessed with.
Tinubu, who was represented by Kofo Tunji-Olagunju stressed that without agriculture it would not be possible to have stock markets, banks, urging the trainees to take the gains of the scheme seriously.
Meanwhile, the President of the NAOC JV Agro Trainee Scheme, Christian Achonwa, commended the Joint Venture for the initiative, adding that such scheme sustained would help in tackling crime among youths of Niger Delta.