As part of efforts to enhance Nigeria self-sufficiency in wheat production, the National Agricultural Lands Development Authority (NALDA), has acquire 200 hectares of land in Gombe state for wheat production.
The farm is expected to engaged 400 youths in Gombe State in wheat production.
Speaking during the ‘groundbreaking ceremony of 2021 Dry Season Wheat Production’ at the wheat production site in Dogon Ruwa community of Kaltungo Local Government Area of Gombe State, NALDA Executive Secretary and Chief Executive Officer, Prince Paul Ikonne, said the agency will engage more youths among farmers if more land is provided.
Ikonne explained that youths are paramount in the heart of President Muhammadu Buhari in terms of employment and engaging them in lucrative ventures such as wheat production following the dear need of the commodity in Nigeria as there is inadequate production of the commodity compared to its demand.
He further stated why the groundbreaking ceremony was done in Gombe, which according to him is that the environment is naturally good for cultivation of the crop including processing and packaging.
He said: “We are here in Gombe State based on the directives of President Muhammadu Buhari, have mandated NALDA to achieve food security and to have job opportunities for our teeming youths through viable agricultural value chains.
“But today we are to do groundbreaking ceremony of wheat production here in Gombe State. Nigeria as country is in dear need of wheat production. Our import value is more than what we produce, and we are consuming more than what we produce in terms of wheat so that makes wheat production very lucrative and very attractive for
Meanwhile, Gombe State Governor, Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya, who was Guest of Honour at the ceremony, commended NALDA for the project, and also other projects NALDA is executing in line with the mandate of President Muhammadu Buhari in terms of creating employment for youths in the state.
“Dry season wheat production effort is to bridge this gap and the project is targeting nine states at the moment with a land size of over 2,500 hectares and is expected to reach at least 10, 000 metric tonnes because following the success by the grace of God, NALDA, the federal government, and private sector will join hands to see that Nigeria go through wheat consumption without necessarily importing a significant part of it”, Yahaya stated.