As part of commitments towards the realization of her vision of agrarian revolution, Landmark University in collaboration with the African Union Commission (AUC) held a webinar to situate the role of the University in implementing the Commission’s African agribusiness youth strategy within the context of Agenda 2063 on Tuesday 15th February, 2022. Projected by the Rural Development Division, Department of Agriculture, Rural Development, Blue Economy and Sustainable Environment (DARBE) of the African Union Commission, the Continental Agribusiness Strategy seeks to mobilise key players including private sectors to support the growth of a modern, robust and inclusive African agribusiness that will generate employment and income, contribute to economic growth and reduction of food dependency in Africa.

The acting Vice-Chancellor, Professor Charity Aremu while delivering her opening remarks noted with delight the advantages of having the African Union on board showing the youths opportunities in agribusiness since the economic development of the nation lies with the youths. She commended the urgent intervention of AU in agribusiness and the empowerment of the youth to avoid economic shipwreck. She noted that if Nigeria and Africa would experience significant growth, agribusiness is the way forward. Professor Aremu insisted that driving agribusiness is one of the strong directions the University must engage noting the role of one of her mission statements – raising a set of reformers – in the realization of the agrarian vision. “To raise this set of reformers, they must be well empowered to identify the needs of the people, develop the skills and manpower needed for the growth of the agricultural sector,” she said.

She thereafter appreciated the facilitator of the collaboration, Dr Janet Edeme, Head, Rural Development Division, DARBE, African Union Commission, for her passionate drive and commitment towards the restoration of African agricultural grandeur as she urged participants to maximise the treasures of the webinar for the betterment of the nation and continent.

The African Union Commission (AUC) Commissioner, Department of Agriculture, Rural Development, Blue Economy and Sustainable Environment, Her Excellency, Ambassador Josefa Sacko represented by the Head, Rural Development Division, DERBE, AUC, Dr Janet Edeme, in her opening remarks also stated that the African Union through her initiatives encouraged African Universities to run programmes in agribusiness thereby making it more people inclusive and also collaborate with national agricultural platforms, ministries of agriculture and local institutions on having a common ground for the development of agriculture in Africa. According to her, AU initiated African countries development agenda to be achieved by 2025 includes creating job opportunities for at least 30% of youths in agriculture, value chain and supports. This initiative also facilitates the participation of women and youths in gainful and attractive employment opportunities. 

Earlier, the Registrar, Miss Fola Oyinloye in her remarks revealed some similarities in the vision and mission statements of African Union and Landmark University, according to her, they are “two entities with the mission drive to find and occupy the place in global space through impact”. She identified Landmark as a full-bodied private University, with a population of young people and on the other hand, the African Union with one of the quests to push agriculture to young people with a focus on youth empowerment through agribusiness. With the above, Miss Fola Oyinloye stated that Africa, Agriculture, Young people and Focus on the Global Space are the common grounds for collaborations between the two entities. She then expressed optimism that the two entities would after the webinar through collaborative efforts in research and other avenues explore the possibilities of bringing to the fore untapped opportunities in agribusiness.  

The Policy Officer, DARBE, AUC, Mr Kennedy Ayason, in his presentation titled, “AU Agribusiness Strategy: Role of Higher Education in Operationalizing the African Agribusiness Youth Strategy within the Context of Agenda 2063”, stated that Agenda 2063 is a strategic framework for the socio-economic transformation of the continent over the next fifty years which seeks to accelerate the implementation of past and existing continental initiatives for growth and sustainable development. Mr Ayason added that the Agenda 2063 is aimed at having a more united and strong Africa today that require among others a long-term strategy to move forward, a changing global and African context, new investment opportunities and global interest in Africa that we need to capitalize on and building on the NEPAD experience. 

The 17th LUCRID webinar also featured a session of interaction by participants and was coordinated by AUC’s Dr Janet Edeme. 

Professor Charity Aremu while delivering her opening remarks. 

The acting Vice-Chancellor, Professor Charity Aremu addressing participants at the 17th webinar. 

The Registrar of Landmark University, Miss Fola Oyinloye, giving her remarks at the 17th webinar. 

Dr Janet Edeme, Head, Rural Development Division DARBE, AUC during her presentations. 

AUC’s Mr Kennedy Ayason, while making his presentation online from AU headquarters. 

(L-R) The acting Vice-Chancellor, Professor Charity Aremu and acting Dean, College of Agriculture, Dr O. Alabi at the webinar. 

The Director, Landmark University Center for Research, Innovations and Discoveries (LUCRID), Dr Adeolu Adediran, giving a prologue of the webinar. 

A cross-session of faculty and students at the 17th LUCRID webinar

A cross-session of Landmark University Kings and Queens at the 17th webinar.

Group photograph of the Vice-Chancellor with some participants after the webinar. 

Categories: SDG 1, SDG 17, SDG 4