While Nigeria is not only struggling with unemployment, but the possibility of food shortage this year 2023, due to insecurity and rising costs, it is a welcome idea that the youth benefit from training in Agro- Entrepreneurship Skills to overcome both challenges. Once you acquire a skill, it stays with you and can do more than put food on the table, if practiced diligently. And with training focused on the Agro sector, it will support food production in the country.
It is on record that the management of Total Energies and its senior partners, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Ltd, together with South Atlantic Petroleum, China National Offshore Oil Corporation and PRIME130 Nigeria Ltd, trained 20 youths living in Cross River State , to get skills agro-entrepreneurship skills.
The training deals with post harvest management of agricultural produce from primary production to processing and marketing, to help beneficiaries become self-reliant, financially independent and also in line with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals in poverty, no hunger and decent work and economic growth.
At the graduation of the trainees, the country chair, Total Energies Upstream Nigeria Limited, Mr. Mike Sangster, who was represented by Lolade Temitope Ogungbe, the CSR Officer, disclosed that the training was aimed at helping the trainees add value to the agricultural sector. Beneficiaries are empowered with starter packs to work; processing, packing and distribution of farm produce, to reduce losses and waste caused by the lack of reliable preservation methods.
“Today’s graduating beneficiaries have acquired the knowledge needed to properly package their products, marketing, bookkeeping, maintaining stock records and fund administration,” he said.
In his remarks, the Chief Upstream Investment Officer of the NNPC Upstream Management Services (NUIMS), Bala Wunti, commended all partners for making the training program a huge success. Wunti who spoke through the Community Relations Officer NUIMS, Anthony Francis, charged the beneficiaries of the program not to play with the opportunity but take advantage of the training to become self-reliant.
A beneficiary of the Program, Miss Precious Eta, said that the experience gained is capable of transforming one from poverty to at least a common entrepreneur who can become an employer of labor, adding that the training will help those beneficiary in the expansion of their businesses, as well as the use of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) knowledge in agro businesses to restore their fortunes.
Another beneficiary, Mr. Sunday Edem while thanking, said that the knowledge gained will be used for the expansion of the many agro businesses he is doing.
In his remarks, Mr. Samson Ekpeyong, said he was happy that his son who used to roam the streets of Calabar before, now has something to do because of the training given to him.