In order to find easy transport of perishable agricultural produce from Ekiti state, a former Nigerian Air Force Officer, Chief Flight Surgeon and Chief Aerospace Medical Consultant, Dr. Makanjuola Akindele Owolabi, has joined prominent personalities in the state to demand for the establishment of cargo airport in Ado Ekiti, the state capital.
Owolabi said that farmers in the state would only earn justifiable income from their produce if they are evacuated quickly to the markets like Lagos, Abuja and other cities and it is only air transport that can provide such quick movement.
He noted that Ekiti is an agrarian state, despite the fact that it is known for its intellectuals and noted that agriculture is the beckon of hope to overcome the present unemployment and also to empower rural dwellers financially, adding that under the present administration many people have gone back to agriculture and they are doing so well.
Owolabi , who was a gubernatorial aspirant in Ekiti state said that agriculture is the key to creating jobs but the market for the farm produce lies outside Ekiti state.
He said the airport is necessary because there are plans to introduce mechanised agriculture in the state, which would boost the farm produce that need to be evacuated quickly to the target markets where they would be consumed.
“We are going into mechanised agriculture.Ekiti State is perhaps, one of the states that have best arable lands in Nigeria. As farmers, we have determined that mechanised agriculture is the way to go. It entails getting all the youths, train and also motivate them to know that the richest people in America and other parts of the world are farmers. We should also let them know that I started my aviation hospital, which is now well known worldwide, from the proceeds of farming,” Owolabi said.