President Muhammadu Buhari has urged Nigerian youths to take advantage of the countrys growing agricultural sector and go to the farm to earn respect for themselves.
The president said this while he was meeting with Chief Executive Officers of six American agricultural companies and their Nigerian counterparts including, Aliko Dangote, on Monday, April 30, 2018.
During the meeting, the president reiterated his call on youths in Nigeria to seize opportunities in agriculture, a sector of the economy he said is already proving to be the bedrock of the nation's new economy.
In a statement released by the president's Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, Buhari urged young Nigerians to explore opportunities easily accessible in agriculture because it is the future of the country.
He said, "We realized, rather belatedly, that we ought to have been investing in agriculture. We are now aiming at food security because of our large population.
"Our youths, the ones who have gone to school and even those that have not, should go to the farm, to earn respect for themselves. Agriculture is providing jobs for millions of our citizens and we are doing well towards the attainment of food security and jobs. "
According to Shehu, the president welcomed several investment proposals being put in place by the Americans and their Nigerian counterparts.
He noted that some of the issues that were up for discussion during the meeting were the three million tons of fertilizer by Dangote coming on stream in July, to be followed by another one to produce 1.4 million tons of the commodity; as well as a large-scale modern seed production company, and weed and pest management and chemicals products companies by the Americans.
The Burger King food chain also presented plans to integrate local farmers in livestock production; the Heinz tomatoes production, with backward integration of Nigerian tomato farmers. Another American company has also set plans in motion to set up a local branch in Nigeria to facilitate merchandising of commodities and establish a link between the Nigerian producers and the global market.
A tractor manufacturing company, John Deer, also presented a plan to the president for an assembly plant in Nigeria to produce 10,000 tractors in four years.
At the meeting, President Buhari promised the support of his administration in the promotion of skill development, innovation and entrepreneurship among the young population.
The president also lamented about the Nigerian media's willful neglect to report on the successes of his administration.
"The media may not appreciate the work we are doing but we will shock them by the success we are recording," he said.