Agri-business is set to generate N1 billion to the coffers of the Oyo State treasury according to Dr. Debo Akande, the Director General of Oyo State Agribusiness Development Agency (OYSADA).
Daily Trust reports that the OYSADA boss who doubles as the Executive Adviser on Agribusiness to Governor Makinde made the disclosure during a media parley held at the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture, Ibadan.
Akande confirmed that no fewer than 600 out of over 3,000 youths from Oyo state, that were trained at Nasarawa State in 2022 have been empowered and engaged in both crop and animal farming by the state government under different programs, including Oyo-Cares project.
Also, he noted that the state will soon begin to generate about N1bn as revenue annually from agribusiness, stressing that the state is no doubt one of the best agribusiness hubs in Nigeria with the huge investment and vision for agribusiness development under the Seyi Makinde-led administration.
Akande revealed that it was the foresight of the Governor Makinde-led government that has placed Oyo State a step ahead of others on agribusiness development including the African Development Bank (AfDB), leading to the establishment of Agricultural free trade zone in parts of Africa and Nigeria, adding that agribusiness development project that AfDB is implementing at a continental level is also what Oyo State was already implementing at Fashola and Awe before the AfDB even started.
“I just got back from Zambia under the auspices of the Zambia, Uganda, Tanzania trip. I was dumbfounded with what I saw in terms of modern agricultural practice. What we thought we’re doing now is en mass in all those places. You see farm estates, farm hubs all over the place, in fact I felt embarrassed that we’re just starting.
“This is private sector driven and when the governor said private sector involvement is over 70 percent, he wasn’t just saying it, he said it because of what he has seen and a trip to Fashola will show you the magnitude of what this private sector is already doing there. These people don’t even know the amount of revenue we are already generating in millions from Fashola even when we’ve not even fully started.
“By the end of next year, I don’t expect anything less than N1bn worth of revenue with what is already on ground. The governor is a very prudent and conservative person who has done exceptionally well to provide ideas that will make Oyo truly great. People just need to be patient to see the outcome of all these things, which is even global that we’re just keying into.
“I mean, if this is not global, why would the African Development Bank be spending over $1bn to start what they call strategic agro-processing zones? Exactly what we’re already doing at Fashola. Why would they be doing that across the whole of Africa? So, we’ve actually preempted what would be the global trend and we’ve started before them even the African Development Bank has been there, and by virtue of what we did at Fashola, they’re giving us another $40m to start at Ijaye.
“Oyo is the only state in the whole of the South West that has been accorded respect by the World Bank to join what they call L-Press Project, that’s another $40m. We held the launching in Abuja and Oyo State was there, it’s public knowledge. Oyo has become the darling of everybody because we have a governor with a vision, who is following global trend in international best practice in agricultural development and it has started yielding results.”