Speaking at the ceremony, the Minister of Water Resources, Mr Suleiman Adamu, said the agreement would also help in boosting employment opportunities for the youths.
Adamu said the MoU, which revolves around the graduate employment scheme, would be located in each of the 109 Senatorial Districts across the country.
According to him, the scheme would enhance the ability of the river basins to package their water services with the provision of complimentary basic rural infrastructure and improved agricultural support services.
“These centres would be along the Songhai Farm settlement style, exploring Public-Private Partnership model ownership and financing while the river basins would be the primary delivery vehicles.
“The main objective of this scheme is massive job creation for the youth with all-year round agricultural production and other value chain activities such as processing, storage and markets.
“Each of these farm centres will have a minimum of 50 graduate amounting to about 1,200 graduate employees nationwide,’’ the minister said.
Adamu urged the Chief Executive Officers of the River Basins to take charge of implementation of the scheme for increased food production, graduate employment and effective management of the water resources.
The Regional Director, Songhai Farms Ltd., Prof. Godfrey Nzamujo, described the model as an opportunity for Nigeria to use its God-given resources to fight poverty.
Nzamujo said there was the need for Nigeria to begin to invest in agriculture, saying this would boost wealth creation, human capital development and improvement in health.
He noted that food produced in an unhealthy way had negative effects on the lives of those who consumed them.
The Chairman, Forum of Managing Directors of River Basin Authorities, Mr Jimoh Afolayan commended the minister for initiating the blueprint toward repositioning river basins across the country.
Afolayan restated the commitment of the forum in seeing that Songhai model was well implemented for sustainable development in the country.