By Chris Chimeze
In order to accelerate the nation’s socio-economic development and promote foreign exchange, Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu (SAN), has appealed to the Federal Government to extend the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) intervention farming funds to cash crop sector.
The Governor made the appeal while inaugurating Bambi Farms, a factory specialized in producing vegetable oil at Okeigbo in Ile-Oluji/Okeigbo Local Government Area of the state.
The Company was among the five firms that recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the State government in Akure.
The Oil Mill Factory was adjudged the second largest in the state after the State-owned Okitipupa Oil Mill which the present government has concluded plans to ensure it becomes operational in no distant time.
Arakunrin Akeredolu submitted that if the Federal Government could extend the funds to the sub-sector and fund it well, Nigeria would earn reasonable foreign exchange that would help in no small way to fast-tract the nation’s development.
While emphasising that no amount of production of grains in Nigeria could compete with that of America, he maintained that funding the cash crop sector would increase Nigeria’s earnings.
He reassured of his administration’s readiness to support any individual willing to invest in the socio-economic growth and development of the State .
Akeredolu particularly commended the management of Bambi Farms Limited for deeming it fit to set up the factory to create job opportunities and boost the internal revenue base of the state.
The Governor who stressed that his administration’s quest for industrialisation birthed the establishment of the factory in Oke-Igbo, enjoined people of the town to support the management of the company to ensure it is successful.
“Without any doubt, this company will generate more income to farmers who deal in palm kernel and would equally end the stressful old method of producing oil and therefore, needs our supports to grow.
“From record available to me, it can produce 120 tons of soya beans and palm kernel oil per day,” he said.
Earlier in his welcome address, Chairman, Bambi Group of Companies, Mr Ade Ayoola thanked the state government for availing the Company with 1,000 hectares to invest on, adding that it will be adequately utilized for the growth of not only the company, but the entire state.
Ayoola who stressed that the factory has the capacity to process 120 tonnes of Palm Kernel and Soya beans per day added that it produces Crude palm kernel oil, Palm kernel cake, Soya beans oil and Soya mill.
Also, Royal Father of the Day, the Ooni of Ife, Oba Enitan Ogunwusi, thanked the state government for its immense support towards the realisation of the factory.
The Monarch commended the Chairman of the company for bringing such an impactful factory closer to his people and the state saying the community will not forget his noble gesture.
Oba Ogunwusi however, appealed to all to always remember their source for development.
The Osemawe of Ondo Kingdom, Oba Victor Kiladejo and the Oluoke of Oke-Igbo, Oba Oluwole Babajide who was represented by Chief Babatunde Odejobi, commended Governor Akeredolu for creating business-friendly environment for investors.
While commending the step taken by Ayoola, they described his gesture as a clarion call to others to invest in human value projects that would reduce the rate of unemployment in the state.
The Monarchs expressed optimism that the Oil Mill will grow beyond prominent ones in the country and called on well to do individuals to follow suit in developing their communities.
Dignitaries at the ceremony included Finance Commissioner, Mr Wale Akinterinwa, Chairman/CEO of Ondo State Investment and Promotion Agency (ONDIPA), Mr Boye Oyewumi, his parents, Chief Oyegun Oyewumi and his wife, Funmi and Chairman of Ondo West Local Government, Otunba Ade Adeniyi.
Others include; former Chairman, Ile-Oluji/Okeigbo Local Government, Surv Niran Akinniyi, Chief Issac Akintade, Obalife of Ife, Oba Idowu Adediwura, Aguro of Ife, Oba Adetoye Odewole, a Senior Pastor from the Trinity International Church, Pastor Ituah Ighodalo and others.
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