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Agricultural revolution will curb insecurity, reduce poverty in Nigeria: Shettima

Vice President Kashim Shettima has identified the agricultural revolution as a panacea to insecurity and poverty in the country.

Mr Shettima stated this while delivering a lecture on “Addressing Nigeria’s Food Security Challenge Through Hi-Tech Approach: The Role of Nigerian Universities” at the 13th convocation lecture of the Al-Hikmah University in Ilorin, Kwara.

He said a revolution could be achieved by deploying technology to actualise food security for the country’s growing population.

Mr Shettima underscored the role of education and training of the country’s population to take full advantage of the growing influence of technology in all aspects of human existence.

“Nigeria’s future can be secured by agricultural revolution through imaginative and bold leadership, a secure and peaceful environment, and a sound education system that does not reduce the limit of the citizens to only the sky.

“The final issue involves the choices Nigerians have to make regarding our future. We can overcome insecurity if we can grow our economy to radically reduce our poverty levels. Only an agricultural revolution can guarantee this,” said the vice president.

He said Nigeria could reduce its dependence on the rest of the world when it can employ all seeking employment.

“I believe our future lies in an imaginative and bold leadership, a secure and peaceful environment, and an education system that teaches us that only the sky is not our limit,” Mr Shettima said.

The vice president noted that Nigeria has no justification not to be among the 10 richest countries in the world.

Mr Shettima emphasised the value of realistic stocktaking of the nation’s assets and liabilities.

“Going by the amount of arable land, water resources and size of our humanity, Nigeria has no reason not to be among the 10 richest countries today.

“That we are near the bottom is precisely why we sought to offer our services to do justice to all that God has bestowed us with.

“Nigeria today reminds us that it is not enough to have potential. Indeed, the potential to grow and the failure to utilise that potential is a virtual death sentence for any living thing.

“For nations, it breeds frustration and decay. For countries such as ours, it breeds unacceptable levels of poverty and avoidable conflicts as we see today,” said the vice president.

He maintained that Nigeria had enough of everything needed to feed its huge population, grow a vibrant agricultural industry and supply huge markets with produce from which technology would have extracted the greatest value.