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Obasanjo Ex-President says Adesina WFP laureate award will encourage everyone in agriculture

OBJ said the award was a motivation to all who is involved in the aspect of agriculture either in research, production, marketing and financing.

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Former president, Olusegun Obasanjo

(Okay Nigeria)

The Former President of Nigeria, Olusegun Obasanjo, says the World Food Prize (WFP) Laureate award of Akinwumi Adesina, was an encouragement to anyone involved in  agriculture.

Obasanjo told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Saturday in Des Moines, Iowa state in USA.

He said that the award was a motivation to all who is involved in the aspect of agriculture either in research, production, marketing and financing.

“So what does this do, it encourages anybody in agriculture in the same way that Nobel prize in any of the  areas that it has been created to serve will encourage people in that area.

“And every aspect of agriculture be it research, be it production, be it marketing, be it financing in all aspect of agriculture.

“It should be an encourager and that is why it should help us not only in Nigeria but in Africa generally."

On zero hunger forum, Obasanjo said that the forum was geared towards achieving sustainable food security and nutrition in Nigeria.

The essence of the forum was to see how the national report on agriculture was being implemented at the states level.

He said that the implementation of the forum would involve every states of the Federation including the Federal Capital Territory.

Obasanjo said that agriculture should be driven at the rural communities and states level, adding that duty of the Federal Government was to ensure it provides conductive environment.

According to him, the zero hunger forum have come up with eight pilot states to sustain food security, adding that the forum have had its first meeting in Benue state.

The former president listed the pilot states as Sokoto, Benue, Borno, Ebony, Ogun, Ondo, Kebbi.

He said that the aim of creating the pilot states was for the forum committee members to monitor and see what these pilot states are doing, how they are doing it and what others can learn from them.

“For the first two years we want to involve about half a dozen of states and now we have made it eight states because we want to be meeting in those states quarterly.

“We want to see what they are doing, how they are doing it and what can others learn from them, what can we advise them to do and we have had the first meeting in Benue state, we are having the second meeting in two weeks’ time in Ebony state.

“And the Benue state the first one we had it had been fairly successful, we saw what they are doing and we were able to advise them what they should do differently and they have taken it up.

“We were able to help them where they need help internally and even where we think they can get external assistance.

“After that we may make it six states per year so that within five years we will have covered the whole 36 states."

ALSO READ: Akinwunmi Adesina emerges 2017 World Food Prize Laureate, wins N78M cash prize

Obasanjo said that the eight pilot states were taken for the first two years, adding that every states was on but“ we are visiting these eight pilot states in the first two years.

The Nigeria zero hunger strategy review 2030 was launched in January this year. The forum was geared towards achieving Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) that emphasises prominence of food security and nutrition in member states.

The forum consists of Minister of Agriculture and Health, African Development Bank, Tony Elumelu Foundation, Obansanjo foundation, Dangote Group and others.

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