A former governor of Ogun State and Senator representing Ogun East, Otunba Gbenga Daniel, has urged Nigerians to go back to farm in order to produce enough food for the nation and reduce hunger.
Daniel also assured of President Bola Tinubu’s determination to revamp the agricultural sector to enhance food sufficiency in the country.
He spoke at the flag-off of a training programme for rice farmers held on Monday at the Asoludero Court, Sagamu, Ogun State.
The Senator disclosed that the Tinubu administration is committed to making Nigeria one of the top rice producers across the globe.
The event also involved the distribution of free rice seedlings and fertilizers to about 100 participants.
In his speech, Daniel acknowledged the nation’s “great potential” in rice cultivation and production.
The lawmaker recalled how agriculture used to be the mainstay of the nation’s economy, stressing the need for the masses to rekindle their interest in farming in order to meet both local and international consumption, especially to earn foreign exchange for the country.
He enjoined Nigerians to continue supporting the present administration in its efforts to tackle the myriad of challenges facing the country and provide succour to the citizenry.
“God has been so good to us in Nigeria. We have a lot of potentials. Before the advent of oil, agriculture was the mainstay of our economy. But somehow, we neglected agriculture which have greater prospects with the land we have in abundance.
“I want to plead with us that it is time to return to farming. After this programme, we expect you to plant these seedlings and become successful rice farmers. Let us begin to grow rice and make Nigeria become one of the rice-producing countries in the world,” he said.
Speaking, the Director-General of National Productivity Centre, Dr Nasir Raji-Mustapha, described rice production as the “new oil” for the nation’s economy.
Raji-Mustapha, who was represented by Mrs Linda Bitrus, charged the participants at the training to reciprocate the gesture of the organisers.