Worried by the increase in food insecurity in the country, the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, has said partnership between Governors especially among those in South-West, will help ensure food security in the country.
The monarch argued that the partnership would also halt the 80 percent of food produce that often waste before arriving the market where the consumers were waiting for the produce.
Speaking during a courtesy visit to office of the Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode, stressed that there was need for more collaborations in the area of agriculture especially in the South West noted for cash crops.
The Ooni argued that the partnerships would also help provide employment for teaming unemployed youths in the country.
Ogunwusi however commended the Governor on the partnership that brought about the Lake Rice and how he had been transforming Lagos, imploring him to keep up the good works.
The Ooni disclosed that any time he commemded the Governor on how he is transforming Lagos, the Governor is usually saying he was just starting, which means he still has a lot in stock in his quest to develop the state.
He therefore appealed to his fellow royal fathers to support the Governors in their domain as governance cannot be left to government alone, especially considering royal fathers are more closer to the people.
Responding, Ambode disclosed that plans had been concluded to integrate the six States in the South West region to ensure food security especially in addressing demand and supply deficit for the overall benefit of the people.
The governor vowed his commitment to the economic growth and promotion of the traditional value and culture of the Yoruba nation.
He recalled that in the last one year, the State Government joined the Oodua Investment Group in addition to the acquisition of land in Ogun and Oyo States for agricultural purposes, saying that government would scale up the economic integration of the South West States as well as the cultural heritage of the region.
While commending the Ooni for his acheivements in office so far, Governor Ambode said the visit to Lagos was historic in the annals of his administration coming barely few weeks after the first year anniversay of the coronation of Ooni.
“One year after, it has become very evident that everything and every step that Ooni has taken has been for the positive good of the Yoruba nation. The Ooni represents the cohesion that we are looking for in Yoruba land and for that reason, we will do everything to continue to ensure that this government supports the cultural heritage of the Yoruba people.
“We are glad to note that within the last one year also, Lagos State has been able to join the Oodua Investment Group as part shareholders of that economic vehicle that we will use to power the economic integration of the Southwestern states. We want to assure your majesty that what you stand for is what this government also stand for.
“We believe that we cannot afford to waste away the cultural heritage of the Yoruba people and we are to start from a platform where it moves away from economic integration to socio, political and also cultural evolution of what we think the Yoruba people stand for and that is also what I stand for,” he said.
“I believe strongly that the test case of what we are trying to do about food security in Lagos State is just more or less like an elixir for what it should be across the western region and on that note, we want to say that we have already acquired land in Ogun and Oyo States but what is imperative for us to move forward now is that we would integrate all other Southwestern States into the food security mechanism of demand and supply for us to move forward,” he added.
The Governor said Lagos, as a cosmopolitan State and the economic hub of the Yoruba people in terms of commerce, must be at the vanguard of promoting commerce in the region, assuring that his administration would vigorously pursue such to the benefit of the people.
According to him, everything Ooni has said on food security is in cossonace with our believe and we believe that if we move forward, Nigeria will also move foward. The future is brighter as we see it and we will not relent to ensure that our traditional value and culture are enhanced further than what it is presently.
Besides, Governor Ambode thanked the monarch for promoting continuous communication among traditional rulers and government for the purpose of enhacing the future of the Yoruba people, while also ackonoledging his immense contribution to the development of tourism, trade and commerce in Lagos State.