Tuesday, April 3, 2018 5:31 pm
Ms Felicia Ezekiel, an unemployed graduate of University of Abuja, says her involvement in agriculture once saved her from committing suicide.
Ezekiel, who holds a B.Sc. Accounting degree, said this in an interview with News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Tuesday.
She recalled that her involvement in agriculture made her to jettison the evil idea of committing suicide because of frustration induced by her “staying at home for three years without a job.
“After graduating and staying at home for three years, while seeking a white-collar job as a graduate of Accounting which wasn’t forthcoming, I became anxious and disenchanted.
“I was almost going mad; I even went to the extreme by attempting suicide until a Good Samaritan, who was into Ugwu (pumpkin) vegetable farming, encouraged me to go into farming.
“I reluctantly went into Ugwu vegetable farming as a last resort because I have exhausted all the available options, as advised by my mother.
“I was motivated to go into agriculture because of President Muhammadu Buhari’s agriculture-driven policies which many citizens embraced and became rich after crop growing and harvests.
“Today, I can tell you that I am a proud Ugwu vegetable farmer; through farming, I have started making money and paying my bills.
“I started by renting a parcel of land for N20,000 annually in Kugbaru, Karu Local Government Area of Nasarawa State, and today, I employ over seven persons and have over 40 off-takers,’’ she said.
Ezekiel said that Ugwu vegetable farming had given her more that she had bargained for, as she could now count her achievements with joy.
“We have two graduates in the house who are not working, a mother and other siblings, but through Ugwu vegetable farming, I cater for the needs of my entire household.
“It is through Ugwu vegetable cultivation that I pay my house rent and let me shock you; I am currently building a house, which is already at the roofing stage.
“I am paying the school fees of my younger ones and taking care of my aged mother; through Ugwu vegetable farming, I am able to take care of my family.
“I am planning to engage in the cultivation of other crops like beans, maize and yam during this rainy season but Ugwu vegetable farming will remain my main business.
“My advice for those youths waiting for white-collar jobs is for them to embrace farming because the Buhari-administration is promoting the interests of farmers, including the youth,’’ she said.