Gov Seyi Makinde has signed the Oyo State Agribusiness Development Agency, OYSADA, bill into law.
Mr Makinde, in his remarks shortly after signing the bill into law on Wednesday at the Government House in Ibadan, said that the law provides for the establishment, composition and powers of the Oyo State Agribusiness Agency and every other matters connected therewith.
According to him, agribusiness remains one of the cardinal programmes of his administration and signing the bill into law gives legal backing to the Agency.
“The signing of the agency bill into law will allow it to start work fully and to kickstart the operation of the Farm Estates projects in Eruwa in Ibarapa axis and Akufo, Ibadan.
“With the signing into law of the Agency bill, they are now free to start business as OYSADA.
“They will be based in Saki and they will be starting the first two projects as soon as possible.
“The first is the Farm Estate at Eruwa and the second is the farm estate at Akufo.” he said.
The governor said that his administration’s decision to sign the bill at this critical time is in readiness for the expected boom in its economy through the derivable benefits from agribusiness initiatives.
On the gains to derive from the agency, Governor Makinde said the agency aims to develop the strategy, coordinate, and implement agribusiness Investments and projects through public, private and development partnerships.
“It will also enhance the optimisation of agro-food value chain business within Oyo state through an agricultural ecosystem that strengthens productivity, value chain growth and the processing and packaging of agro-based production.
“The agency will support the state’s economic growth through engagement in domestic trade in agro-food by import substitution and exportation of nutritious processed and package agro-based products.
“It will also promote engagement of youth in agriculture through the development of agribusiness enterprises from downstream, midstream to the upstream of the agricultural sector,” he added.
Dr Debo Akande, Executive Adviser to the Governor on Agribusiness, said the signing of the bill has set in motion government’s plan to develop the state and its agribusiness sector.
Mr Akande said there were modern approaches that needed to be adopted in agricultural practices and that the state aim to move from micro to small and medium enterprises in agriculture by adopting modern technology and approaches to agricultural business in the state.
“There is a need to engage in the business dimension, management dimension and different actors will have to be engaged in this new approach.
“For this to happen, we need to have a system that can respond to their needs in place, and which can also respond to their ways of doing things.” he said.
Mr Akande commended Governor Makinde for conceptualising the law, noting that it would change the course of practicing agriculture in the state.