NCAM boss deplores dominance of agricultural sector by ageing population
The Acting Executive Director of National Centre for Agricultural Mechanization (NCAM ), Ilorin, Dr Yomi Kasali has deplored the dominance of the nation’s agricultural sector by ageing population. He believed that the farmers surprisingly still contribute about 70 per cent of the Nigerian Food Production capacities despite their ageing status.
Kasali said if the youths are not mobilized to farm with adequate training and modern equipment, commercial farming may soonest go into an extinction in Nigeria.He spoke at the weekend in Ilorin during the closing ceremony of the training of youths and women on Integrated Agricultural Entrepreneurship.
According to the NCAM boss, “the Nigerian economy needs the energy and intellectual inputs of the youths in order to fully diversifythe economy through agriculture. The Nigerian farmers are ageing and use human efforts to produce their output. “
The two weeks training programme which drew over 50 participants from all the nation’s geo political zones, was bankrolled by the National Assembly through the Senate and House Committees on Agriculture.
For Kasali, “in the past, ex civil servants ventured into agricultural production without any prior knowledge or any orientation in form of training but the end always resulted in a massive lost of agricultural investments, which shows that there is need for at least a formal training to acquire the requisite skills before venturing into agricultural enterprises.”
He therefore described the participants as privileged noting that the varying degree of training given them would add value into their lives just as he urged them to utilize the opportunity to their best advantages.
The NCAM leader while laying emphasis on the Fingerlings production aspect of the training, said it remained one of the most lucrative aspect of the three units of the integrated farming options. He added; “poultry and table fish productions are also very lucrative but it is hinged on high investment. You are therefore urged to start little and grow your investment to cover the whole integrated system.”Starter packs were given to the participants at the end of the training.
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