Lagos to establish fruit orchards in 20 secondary schools

Students learning inside a classroom at Alagbado Grammar-School, Lagos

Lagos State Acting Commissioner for Agriculture, Ms Abisola Olusanya has said that the state government is establishing fruit orchards in 20 Secondary Schools across the state to fast-track the development of the State especially in the area of building the culture of tree planting and re-greening the environment in students and youths.

She said that the planting of fruit trees in selected secondary schools was also to help students to become healthy, productive, and environmentally sound.

Olusanya emphasized the importance of tree planting especially in a coastal city as Lagos, noting that the exercise would contribute in no small measure to the transformation of Lagos into a greener, healthier, safer, and orderly State while producing youths who are environmentally conscious.

Olusanya said, “Mr. Governor’s policy of fast-tracking the development of Lagos State is hinged on the THEMES Agenda. Part of this is to engage the youth, particularly students so that they can become healthy, productive, and environmentally sound. In this regard, the Ministry of Agriculture is establishing fruit orchards in 20 secondary schools in the three Senatorial districts in the State.”

According to her, this exercise would further encourage fruit consumption in students which is important for the provision of micronutrients to the body as these food items are a rich source of vitamins and minerals required for the growth, development, and normal functioning of the human body.

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Olusanya listed the affected schools as Yewa Junior High School, Agege; Vetland Grammar School, Orile Agege; Lagos State Senior Model College, Igbookuta; Oriwu Junior Model College, Ikorodu; Community Senior Secondary School, Bayeku; Agufoye Girls’ Model College, Bayeku; Pobuna Secondary School, Poka, Noforija, Epe; St Patrick Secondary School, Odo Iragushi; Ibeju Senior High, Ibeju; King Ado High School, Lagos Island, and Ansarudeen Grammar School, Surulere.

Others are Nawardeen Senior High School, Ebute Meta; United Christian Secondary School, Apapa; Jubril Martin High School, Iponri; Badagry Grammar School, Badagry; Awori Senior College, Ojo; Agidigbi Grammar School, Ikeja; Estate Senior Grammar School, Mushin; Eko Boys High School, Mushin and Oshodi High School, Oshodi.

She stated that the students of the selected schools would further be engaged to set up nurseries, tree planting, and other conservation activities which would encourage their involvement and participation in agricultural practices as well as environmental education.

“Generally, the fruit tree planting exercise will ensure that the students are meaningfully engaged in agricultural practices as well as get necessary diet supplements which include vitamins from fruits without having to spend on purchasing them. They will also be taught to understand the roles of plants in environmental sustainability while at the same time preparing them for self-reliance by using the experience in the establishment of home gardens, tending them, and making some economic gains from the sales of fruits,” she asserted.

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The Acting Commissioner pointed out that apart from the agricultural gains of the fruit tree planting, students would be taught the importance of plants and trees in sustaining the environment as tree planting is one of the most reliable and cheapest means of combating the effect of global warming and climate change.

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