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T

HE popular s logan

th.llthereshould beno "St' limit 10 learning

and the process of ;!('({Uiring knowledge could best be used 10 desoibe the life o f a year old retiree. Mr Ebenezer

Babatunde 0rew·o, who sometimes ago enrolled as an apprentice at the popular Ogunp<' 1Th11'ket. lbadan, Oyo SIDle, to acquire 1'lCCl'Ssary knowledge and skills on how 10 sell agricultural inp uts like chemica ls, fe rtilisers, seeds, cutlass. hoe:s. as well as other agricultura l equ ipment and

I~"

His decision to become a trainee in agm-Inputs venture at the Ogunpa market. Ibadan. regarded by many agricul tu ra l elCperts as the biggesl agro-inpuls market in tl-emtire West Afriat. was ;!Iso to become a sua:essful practising fanner, a dream that has been for years. Even when he Wa"l in gO\'emrnent service, where he spent thirty filre ~ fa rming h...... been Iris \ision.

The pumey to beaJme a farmer and most importan tly. an agro-inpu t dealer was full 0( ups and dO\\Ill to the extent th ai Mr. Oyewu became an object of ilttrac-

tia n and disrussion OI l the Ogunpa market throughou t the time he spent there as an agm-inputs apprentire. In (oct. he \\lasso popular ate"ery nook and cranny of the miuket.. Bullhe reason for his popularity in lhemarket was not rar fetched . many trad-

ers in the market were maT" veIed al the age he decided

to l>e an appren tice. w hile .some were amazed al seeing somebody of his age wrning down to the level of bowing to the instructions of boys and gi rls }'oung enough to be his children. But the 60 year old retiree-studen ts th rougho ut his one-yearstay in !he market did not allow anyt.hing 10 s tand belwren him and the needed knowledge to berome a professional agIO- input dealer_ I-Ie did not also mind the fact !hat he would subject hil1l.';cll to a one-year tra ini ng a longside you ng men and women that were like his children in age in the office o f the President, west Agro-ln put lJe;:J\eI'!'i A.'Nl(iation (WAlDA) inside the Ogunpa market. lliadan. With open mind. dedication. seriousness, Oyewo com p leted h is one-yea r training and h,'ld. his gradualion on Saturday. 21 May, 2O !1. TIle grad ua tion C1!re mony h e ld ins ide the WAlDA hall located inside the markel was rolou rfu l and was atte nded by a creanl of agriculture experts. WAlDA members from Ibadiln and outside the city, many tra d ers with in the market, as we ll as journalists from both print and eleetlonie medi;J. AI the end ofthegraduation ceremony, the retiree agm-input graduand spoke wit h news men a nd explained the reasons w hy he embraced ag rirulture after s pending 35 years as a senior account o fficer in the o Uke o f the Accou n tant-

or an establishment. he HWorkers emphasised, shou ld starl planning for their exit o r ret iremen t now b«ause it wou ld besad loleavea company or governmenrs work wi thou t knowing what to do after. NEven if you were paid millions of naira as gratuity, if you don't know whal to invest the money on. then that money may be uSICIcss. But my advice to people. especially those who would soon retire is to start thinking abou t a venture that would engage their time after retirement. But I would advise people to embrace and im-est in agrirulture because you rnn never regret such iiln ac tion," he a f-

the g rad uand, Alhaji Akinmsde (left) hi!J Mr. Baba tunde Oyewo, during the graduatio n ceremony at Ogunpa market. lbad"", Oyo State.. recently . General Oyo Slate Ministry prising th at I eventua ll y " When I retired from ovil o r Commerce and Industry, Secretariat, lbadan. Acco rd ing 10 him, " 1 know my action would be a surprise 10 many people . Bu t I be lieve tha t the re shoul d n o age limit to lhe pma!S5 o f acquiring knowledge because success is nol. a respectcT of age, sex. tribe and even skin roIou r." " In fact,. one o f my p hilosophies of life is thai once you stop learning and thinkIng. then you will begin to stink and sink. Right from my childhoOd ti ll now, agricu lture has been my vision/dream. so it is not sur-

Yam price hits roof in Bau

Y

AM, the m ost popula r food fo r m ost homes in Bauch i State. has become a 5Cal'(.'e commodity. A survt!)' conducted by the News Agmo/ of Ni· gen a (NAN) reveale d that the scarcity ofthe rom-modit)' l1<1S Jed to a sharp increase in the p rire of the product The survey showed that the price o f tile commodity has risen by between 200 and 400 per cent in different paris of the state. NAN s urvey furth e r showed that the scarcity of the commodity, as weU as the jump in the price of the commodity is "an a nnual OC'CUIJ1:!nce" _

Mr Moses Uza, a tracJer at Moda ~wal M arket in Bauchi oH!tropolis t o ld N AN tha t because y am was a perishable and difficult-to-pn:!SCrve commod-

itY, !ritdClSand fa rmelSp re(erred to d ispose o f it as quickly as po5S1ole. Aa:ording to him. it is the desire to di;posE' of the rom-

"quiddy" """"'"

motlity Iha t is responsible for the saurity of the product I!'--ery year. He said tha t most yam tradem in Bau chi and other partsd the north 1rn\'eIJed to as far as Benue. Nassarawa a nd Taraba states to purd= the rommotlity. NAN reports ihatdue to the scarcity of the rommodity, n s m a ll tu ber o f yam, which used to sell at less than N JOO was now sold a l. between N200 and N350. Usman BeUo, a trnder o f the comm odity a t Wi nti Market in Bauch.! metr0polis said th.1 t a large tuber of yam. w h ich used to seU at Nl oo, was now sold OIl between N400 and NSOO. H e attributed thesrnrcity III the rise in the price of die-

.

sel, a situation which h ad mad e it diffiUll t to transport the commodity fro m the Benue- Nas,sarawa axis to the state. Anayo Ike,. a rustomerJ who was at the Wun ti marke t to purchase lhe commodity, said lIl.1 t five small tubers of yam, w hich used to sold at N250 and N370 a few weeks ago, now sell al. belween N400 and NSOO. Ike said 1Il&l1 he had de-' oded to buy cilhersweel o r Irish potaloes as alte rnati ve s ince y a m h a d becom e un affo rd ab le. Aish a Isa, a residen t o f Angwa Mu:u:u, near Federal low Cost, Bauchi, said that the increase in the p rice o f yam was taking a to ll on her family. She la mented that sh e could not afford to buy four tubers of yam tequin.-d (or the family'S breakfast 0 lunch.

wml badt to it even a t age

60 and after my 35 years in government service", he stated Giving an insight on how he r e traced his foots tep back to the P.1!h of agrirulture wh ich he said has been h is age lo ng d rea m, M r Oycwo explained that he is a 1982 Higher National Dip loma (H ND) gradua te £romthedepartmenl ofBusiness Ad m inistration from Yaba CoUege of EduCiltiol'\ ~gos Slate. He said prior 10 beroming an appren tice, he disrussed his vis ion with h is mend and colJeilgue in the MiItLWydCommenrand Industry, Alhaji Sin a A li, who latC!r intmduced him to the president of WAlDA, Alhaji OI:tyinka Akinmade, whoadmitted himasanapprentice student to his office/shop a t Ogun pa market.. lbadan. Furth e r mo re, the grad uand 11115 this to say;

service a fter p ut ting in 35 ycars. 1 wasstill agile, strong and full of vilality. So w hy should 1 sit down at home? Since, ' don'l want to relax and be lazy since my brain is still sharp and fresh Md my bones are still strong. so I decided to invest my time, energy and knowledge in agrirulture", he stated. On some of the cha llenges faced du ri ng his tra ini ng. the re ti ree who turned 60 on the 2nd June, 2011, said he never allowed his age to limit his apportuniltes. s tressing thai he inherited hu nli li ty from his tale father. Asked loadviceotherreti rees a nd abou t-to-retire workers in the cowltr)" he 5.1id a nybody working for the government or practising in private com pan ies should always have it OIl the badtoftheirmirdslhat nothing last forever irrespective dlheJXlSlliontheypregentJy occu py In sudl a company

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Meanwhile, when asked to OJIllmen t about his studrot, the WAlDA President, A lhaji Akinlllade, to ld TribuneAgdrulture that Mr Oyewo d is played a high level of humility to u nders tand the knitty-gritty of agro-input busines and he is now qualifted 10 be an extension service officer in the area of agro-inptlts. "We a r e t rai n ing people to help the gove rnmen t ach ieve t he objecti ves of the food security p rogra m me. We' re also train ing them 10 hel p e radicate quackery in the profession and we have modu les of training to give to every s t udent which is regularl y u pda ted a nd upgraded 10 mee t the c h a ll e nges of modem , mechanised and com merc ia l farmi ng . So we are really cont'ributing o ur q u ota to the development of agriculture in the cou ntry. NNot o nly that, we are a lso encou raging youths to e mbrace farm ing in order 10 banis h poverly and h unge r in t he count ry," he concluded.

'Give micro-credit facility to farmers' By Tunde O gunesan

T

HE President, Nigeria Agricu ltll ~1 Coope r a t i ve Orga n isa tion, Oyo S tate cha p te r, Mr Ga ni y u O ladasu. has called 0\1 the Oyo Stale Governor, Senator Abiola Aji mooi, 10 develop macro·emnomk polides that would forusonagriculture as a mean o f job cr ea tion, especia lly for youths in the state. H e made th is delaral:iun w h ile add ressing a press conferellC'e on the p romise

o f the stale governor 10 ereate 20,000 jobs in his first 100 days in office. He said, Ihe governor can achieve this aim if he givcspriority illyoungfarmers so as t o a ch ieve the M iJJenium Developmen t Co.11s (MDG). a move he said would aid in Ihe cradication o f poverty in the5tale. Hlgh li~tingfactors tl"1t

wou ldcn]lilncejobcrcCltion and agricultu ral developmen t in the sta te, he u rged the go\'emor to p romote miero-credit sch e mes fo r young farmers' cooperators

and establishment of fann scltlement cenlres in d ifferent parts o r the s tate. Other su gges tio ns, he madeinclude; promotingof interest free micro-fina nce for agro-input li nd tracto r hiri ng service cooperators; instituting incenti ve schemes for employers to invest in skill developmenl of employed you ths and mandati ng NAPEP,NDE and SEDAN to stre~mline and synch ronise the ir p rogrammes w h ile a lso providing seed fu nding for enlerpreneur pilot.

NIGERIAN TRIBUNE, 21 JUNE, 2011  

Yam price hits roof in Bauchi

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