The World Bank in partnership with the European Union (EU) and the Delta State government, yesterday, commenced the training of 250 youths in the state on the cultivation of hybrid Tomato farming.
The training exercise under the tripartite partnership arrangement, it was gathered, is coming on the heels of the Agricultural segment of the World Bank and EU sponsored State Employment and Expenditures For Results (SEEFOR) projects in the state.
Declaring the 2-weeks training exercise open at Songhai Delta Amukpe, the state commissioner for economic planning, Dr. Kingsley Emu, said that the inclusion of agriculture component in the partnership between the state government and the partnering agencies would help to strengthen the state government’s commitment towards ensuring food security.
Emu who was represented by the Permanent secretary in the Ministry, Mr. Ben Igo, expressed confidence that given the state government as well as the partbering agencies’ commitment to the project, Delta will soon become the hub of hybrid tomato in the nearest future.
He said, “The state government, in partnership with the World Bank and EU have been doing a lot in the state. The agricultural component of this partnership arrangement is paramount given the economic import of agriculture to the wealth and job creation initiative of the Senator Dr Ifeanyi Okowa administration as it will go a long way in enhancing agribusiness in the state.
“The fact that you have been selected as the pioneers of this project, I want to go granulate you as you are indeed very lucky. Therefore, I want to enjoin you to take this exercise seriously and you should begin to imbibe positive mindset towards farming if you must make something good out of this exercise” Emu charges the trainees.
Earlier in his address, the State Project Cordinator of SEEFOR project, Mr. Benson Ojoko, while saying that the job creation component of the World Bank and EU sponsored SEEFOR project in the state has so far generated over 5,000 jobs for youths in the state, held that the inclusion of the agricultural component of the intervention project would be an added advantage in enhancing the job creation profile of the Delta State government.
He said, “Before now, we (The World Bank and EU) have been supporting technical colleges in the state as well as vocational education, but in all of these interventions, none is agriculture based. Therefore, we thought it wise that something was missing; hence the need for the introduction of the agricultural component.
“This intervention is in three dimension which include; To improve the immediate environment, to build the capacity of instructors and teachers and, to empower the youths in the state who will in turn, use the platform as quantum leap to better their economic lives” Ojoko stared.
In their separate remarks, the Chief Job creation officer of the state, Prof. Eric Eboh who spoke through the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Agriculture, Mr. Julius Egbede, and the Duke of Amukpe, Chief Peter Erhinyoja,while lauding the state government and the partnering agencies for the initiative, advised the trainees to justify the state government’s gesture by taking full advantage of the exercise to enhance their economic lives.