Business News of 2014-01-06

Agric Minister named 2013 Forbes Africa Person of the Year

Akinwumi Adesina, Nigeria’s minister of agriculture and rural development has been named by Forbes Africa as the Person of the Year 2013, an annual recognition that takes months of nomination, deliberation, online voting and discussion to select a winner.

The prestigious award is given to a person who has ultimately influenced the progress of the continent, exerted influence outside his day job including the influence their achievements carry across borders with the philanthropic work they carry out.

According to the judges, as reported in the December-January 2014 issue of Forbes Africa magazine, Akinwumi Adesina, although a public servant is prepared to get his hands dirty to tackle one of Africa’s greatest problem which is food security.

The Agriculture minister for three years running said “farmers had waited for too long for people to develop ways of creating wealth for them” and he is “determined to unlock the enormous potential of agriculture in Nigeria”.

Adesina believes he can grow Nigerian agriculture into a $230 billion wealth generator over the next five years and has embarked on a tropical wheat and rice evolution. The aim is to make Nigeria self-sufficient in rice production by 2015 which many believe is unachievable.

The judges hoped by awarding his personality, it will inspire other nations to follow his vision and acknowledge how Africa can feed the world and become a net exporter of food, thus ensuring global food security.

Akinwumi Adesina whose goal is to “make as many millionaires, maybe even billionaires from agriculture as possible”, was nominated ahead of “the Bill Gates of Africa”, Strive Masiyiwa who is the founder and chairman of Econet Wireless and then Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote respectively in that order.

The fourth on the list is founder and executive chairman of African Rainbow Minerals, Patrice Motsepe and then followed by Jim Ovia, founder of Zenith Bank Group.

Source: Ismail Akwei-GhanaWeb
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