From “Food On The Table” To “Hands On The Plough”; Transmuting From Appointments To Agripreneurship BY CHRIS OGAIDANG

In Breaking News, Business, Business & Economy, Opinion, Politics

Sen. Ben Ayade, the Governor of Cross River State is one outstanding Governor in Nigeria, with revolutionary ideas in industrialization and agricultural development. The Governor’s industrialization drive has set the State on a fast track of transformation from a third world sub-national entity to a first world.

One of the key areas of his investment drive is in the Rice value chain. The young, visionary Governor, in working to wean the State off its dependence on federally allocated revenue, conceived of and invested in the Rice Seeds and Seedlings Factory as well as an ultramodern vitaminized Rice Processing Plant.

Together, both investments in the Rice value chain have set a firm foundation for a revolution and greatly multiplied the potential for Rice production in Cross River State.

He also set up the Cross River State Rice Company as well as the Cross River State Rice Company Management Board which together have a mandate to maximize the potential for Rice production, thus creating jobs and wealth for the citizens and, ultimately, the State.

The Cross River State Rice Company and the Cross River State Rice Company Management Board have, thus, set out to fulfill this mandate by unveiling a phenomenal plan to produce a whooping 125, 000 tonnes of Rice annually from the year 2020.

The scheme is expected to employ well over 2, 000 Cross Riverians, in the first year, while maximizing the commercial and mechanized farming methods. The program has the capacity to engage five thousand people by the third year thereby, giving verve to His Excellency, Sen. Ben Ayade’s proposition of ‘Hands on the plough’ as a philosophy for his second term.

Sen. Ben Ayade, the Digital Governor of Cross River State had proposed a transition from the ideology of “Food on the table” to “Hands on the plough”, having provided paid employment to thousands of Cross Riverians through appointments under the “Food on the table” philosophy in his first term.

In the season of “Hands on the Plough”, citizens are going to be gainfully engaged for productivity, with well thought through schemes, conceived to create jobs and wealth and the CrossRice programme by the Cross River State Rice Company and its Board is one of such Special Project Vehicles (SPV).

The Cross River State Rice Company and its Board in keeping with His Excellency Sen. Ben Ayade’s vision and proposition is hands on deck to fulfill the “Hands on the plough” by driving this phenomenal scheme as the ‘plough’ for all the “hands” which the governor had engaged, providing “food on the table”.

Beyond the appointees, the scheme is set to also create thousands of jobs for youths and women, under the Youth Engaged in Agricultural Revolution in Nigeria (Youth EARN) and Agricultural Women Entrepreneurship Scheme of Small and Medium Enterprises (AWESOME).

This Agricultural scheme is truly borne out of the vision of His Excellency to industrialize Cross River State and achieve Agricultural revolution even as he has promised to make Cross River State a land of prosperity where “no child will go to bed on an empty stomach”.

We therefore seek the support of all to ensure the success of the scheme and promise that we will deliver on set objectives while ensuring international best practices in service delivery.

Mr. Chris Ogaidang is Chairman, Cross River State Rice Company Management Board and writes from Calabar.

NOTE: Opinions expressed in this article are strictly attributable to the author, Chris Ogaidang, and do not represent the opinion of CrossRiverWatch or any other organization the author works for/with.

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