Afe Babalola says a decline in Nigeria’s education is affecting agriculture in the country
May 19 , 2015 A Senior Advocate of Nigeria and the Founder of Afe Babalola University Ado-Ekiti, Chief Afe Babalola, has pointed to defects in Nigeria’s education system as the major cause of the neglect of the agricultural sector.
The legal luminary traced the decline in the Nigerian agriculture sector to the discovery of petroleum in the 1960s, saying it was very unfortunate that Nigerian youths were now being trained to seek employment opportunities in other areas while opportunities in the agriculture sector are neglected.
Chief Babalola said if well embraced, agriculture could eliminate hunger, food crisis and also poverty.
Chief Babalola was speaking at the opening of the Agricultural Week of the Afe Babalola University in Ado Ekiti, and is quoted as saying, “Everywhere in the world, throughout the ages, the place and import of agriculture has always been on the front burner of national priority. And this is not for nothing, as agriculture does not only provide food, employment and security, it also reduces the prevalence of poverty, promotes self-sufficiency and reduction in crime rate.
He went on to say “But our educational system, right from elementary school up to the university level, has neglected agriculture, relying only on oil, thereby giving birth to high rate of unemployment.”
Chief Babalola called for youth orientation towards the sector, saying it was also capable of reducing the rate of restlessness and crime among the youth, because according to him “A man who has nothing to eat or feed his family with, may not find it difficult to lapse into petty larceny to make ends meet. After all, a hungry man is an angry man,”
He ended his address by adding that “Apart from according man the opportunity to eat fresh food, agriculture allows man to stay close to nature. The excitement that accompanies planting maize, for instance, and seeing it germinate, tassel and eventually mature for you to harvest is better imagined. It is always a beautiful, fulfilling and an almost indescribable experience.”
True story, sir.