A total of 1,300 women entrepreneurs in Oyo state have been trained under a French government sponsored programme leveraging Nigeria’s agribusiness sector, Gov. Seyi Makinde of Oyo state said on Friday, in Ibadan.
He stated this at the launch of the training programme tagged; “Support to women entrepreneurship in the Agri-food sector in Nigeria (SWEAN)”, within the premises of the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture, Ibadan, (IITA).
The governor expressed delight at the selection of Oyo state women for the programme, noting that the relationship between the state and the French government brought about the development.
“We are delighted that our women in Oyo state are among the 300 direct beneficiaries and 1,000 indirect beneficiaries of this programme.
“So, the reality of interventions like this is that they have the potential of accomplishing more than is projected.
“Historically, our women are known to be very enterprising, they do not only farm, but they also find markets for their produce.
“Some go as far as merchandising, making the best use of the informal structures that they have been exposed to. So, with the training they will be receiving during this SWEAN programme, I have no doubt that they will excel even more,” Makinde said.
Earlier, the Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Mr Jacob Ojemuyiwa, said that Oyo and Kaduna states were the only two states selected for the SWEAN programme, which he described as a great opportunity for women entrepreneurs.
Ojemuyiwa added that the training would go a long way in expanding the skills of women agribusiness entrepreneurs in the two states.
Meanwhile, the governor has expressed appreciation to the French government for its assistance in the Rural Access and Agricultural Marketing Project (RAAMP), saying that already the state had mapped out the roads that would receive attention under the programme.
He said the state government’s plan to complete 200km of access roads before the end of 2021, remained on course, while calling for more interventions because any investment made in the state would go directly to the people.
The governor stated that the state was open for business and that his administration would continue to play its part to see that every investment in the state succeeded.
On the government’s collaboration with IITA on the ‘Start Them Early Program (STEP), Makinde said it had begun yielding positive results with six more schools from all the zones in the state joining the programme.