President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday said that his administration would henceforth take agriculture seriously, saying that crude oil and gas exports would no longer be sufficient as the country’s major revenue earner.

He made this known when he received Dr. Kanayo Nwanze, the Nigerian born President of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), at the Presidential Villa on Friday.
The President said:

    “It’s time to go back to the land. We must face the reality that the petroleum we had depended on for so long will no longer suffice.
    We campaigned heavily on agriculture, and we are ready to assist as many as want to go into agricultural ventures,”.

The president said that improvement of the productivity of farmers, dry season farming, and creative ways to combat the shrinking of the Lake Chad will also be given the necessary attention.

    “There is so much to be done. We will try and articulate a programme and consult organizations like IFAD for advice,” the President said, adding that foreign exchange will be conserved for machinery and other items needed for production, “instead of using it to import things like toothpicks.”

He told the IFAD President that improvement of the productivity of farmers, dry season farming and creative ways to combat the shrinking of the Lake Chad would also receive his administration’s attention.

The IFAD president further congratulated President Buhari on his victory at the general elections and assured him that IFAD readiness to assist the Federal Government and Nigerian farmers to boost agricultural production in the country.