The National Information Technology Development Agency, NITDA, has begun its National Adopted Village for Smart Agriculture, NASVA, training programme for 50 National Youth Service Corps, NYSC, members.
The training began on Thursday in Abuja in collaboration with the Agency’s subsidiary, the National Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics, NCAIR, and the Abuja Technology Village, ATV.
The training is part of the agency’s activities to ensure that all sectors of the country are digitally-driven.
Kashifu Inuwa, the Director-General, NITDA, urged the participants at the opening to seize the opportunity and be intentionally interested in Agricultural entrepreneurship.
Represented by Salisu Kaka, Acting Director, Digital Economy Development Department of NITDA, Inuwa said the skills to be learnt would enable the participants to create jobs.
According to him, the participants will also be able to contribute their quota to ensuring increased productivity, profitability, food security, and agriculture efficiency.
The NITDA boss urged them to be committed to the programme, adding that it would last for six months and was expected to be transformational, and in turn, help them to be self-sufficient and job providers.
“Creativity and innovative thinking must be applied to developing better ways of solving economic issues in the country, especially in the agricultural sector.
“The initiative is part of the agency’s Strategic Roadmap and Action Plan (SRAP 2021-2024) and we hope that alongside our partners, we will engage more beneficiaries,’’ Mr Inuwa said.
The National Coordinator of NCAIR, Garba Ya’u, told the corps members that their intentions to become smart farmers should translate to tangible innovative ideas in order to move the sector forward.
Mr Ya’u said that as part of the pilot programmes, Precision Agriculture would be introduced to the trainees.
“In the long run, we want to make sure you will not just be agriculturalists but tech-agriculturalists,” he said.
He further said that in spite of their fields of study, the programme was open to all and encouraged the beneficiaries to be open-minded to the possibilities that could emanate from such exposure.
Sarah Obayojie, a representative of the ATV, reiterated the company’s resolve to tackle the lingering challenges facing the agricultural sector through indigenous innovations and the application of technology.