The Chancellor, Landmark University, Omu Aran, Kwara State, Bishop David Oyedepo, has said that agriculture, and not crude oil, holds the greatest prospect and promise for the African continent.
Speaking on a topic, “Marketing Agriculture to Secure the Destiny of a Nation”, during the sixth matriculation ceremony of 513 students of the institution in Omu Aran at the weekend, Bishop Oyedepo said that the current falling price of oil at the global market and its attendant devastating effect on the economy of oil dependent nations, best demonstrated his assertion.
“With the all share index and market capitalisation dropping, excess crude account shrinking, foreign reserve dropping and the Naira band being devalued, it is obvious that the economic outlook for Africa’s largest economy appears to be gloomy occasioned by the fall in oil prices,” he said.
The chancellor, who said that economic diversification held great potential to increase Africa’s resilience and fortune, added that the path to unlocking prosperity in Africa lies in promoting effective agribusiness strategies.
Bishop Oyedepo said that the nation should see agriculture as a key sector that could improve food security in the country, added that Nigeria has a land area of 98.3 million hectares, with 74 million hectares of it good for farming, but less than half being explored.
“The population involved in farming is 60 to 70 per cent. Agriculture’s contribution to GDP is also 41.5 per cent. Output of food per capital is among the lowest in sub-Sahara Africa. Crops, livestock and fish have potentials for providing food and nutrition. So, we should see agriculture as a key sector that can improve food security in Nigeria,” he said.