The Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN) has brought together stakeholders from many sectors in an effort to provide the desired results for entrepreneurs and innovators in the agricultural and other sectors of the ecosystem in Ekiti state.
The Nigeria’s manager of KTN, Joshua Adedeji while speaking at the event in Ado-Ekiti, noted that with the collaboration between Global Alliance Africa and United Kingdom Aid, the group intends to achieve the needed support for the innovators under its placed-based innovative project.
He explained that the project which is happening in only Ekiti State in the federation would help to foster relationship with organisations especially in the area of funding for innovators in the state in agriculture sector where the state has comparative advantage.
Adedeji said, “We are currently running a six-year program funded by the UK through the global alliance project to foster alliance in Nigeria and outside. We have series of programme we are running like, placed-based project, open innovation project, global innovation project.
“But the one that has brought us together here is the place-based innovative project which we are running in Ekiti. It is basically identifying innovations in secondary cities, that is, where they have their own comparative advantage but they have not seen the right support either from the private or international organisations to grow and we are starting from Ekiti.
“We have several sectors but the one we are focusing in Ekiti now is the agriculture sector. We are bringing stakeholders here together to identify the key challenges they are facing and areas that need innovation in the sector.
“At the end , we are looking to see the mobilization of more fund into the ecosystem and the innovators to have access to the right funding, not the capital that will be with high interest rate for their businesses to grow. We are also looking at the sustainability of the ecosystem for people to be able to run their businesses without relying on external individuals or groups. Most importantly, we want to ensure that will build on the Nigeria-UK partnership because the UK give the support always.
“When will talk about agriculture, it is not about farming but the entire value chain and we are focusing in the sector because we did our survey and we observed Ekiti has the comparative advantage in the agriculture sector.”
Speaking, the Director General of the Ekiti State Development and Investment Promotion Agency (EKDIPA) , Damola Ajibade said the administration of Dr Kayode Fayemi would continue to do everything possible to support and promote young entrepreneurs across sectors in the ecosystem.