Nigeria’s banana export project on course

By Tanko  Mohammed

Ekiti State will not lose focus on its determination to export banana for economic advancement, its Commissioner for Trade, Investment and Industries, Chief Muyiwa Olumilua, said in Ado-Ekiti on Wednesday.

Olumilua said the state remained passionate at agriculture the mainstay of its economy.

He said that the realisation that thousands of farmers in the state were into banana cultivation, informed the decision by government to plan for its exportation.

The commissioner, who said that the ministry had held a stakeholders sensitisation meeting on the project, stressed that government had cleared about 5,000 hectares of land for farming, and had facilitated the establishment of the Nigerian Export Promotion Council, (NEPC) office in the State.

The establishment of the NEPC office in Ekiti State, he said, was aimed at eliminating the stress of going to neighbouring Ondo State to access export support.

Olumilua said that the state was constructing 1,000 km of rural roads to ease the movement of farm produce to market centres.

This is in addition to the provision of various tax incentives and proactive security architecture to guarantee safety of lives and property, he said.

“With the proactive measures put in place by the state government, Ekiti State has no business with poverty anymore. It is a known fact the state is landlocked, and has virtually no prospect in oil production.

“The state has always been very rich in agriculture and the intention of government to make poverty a thing of history in the state has become more emboldened with the massive opportunities dotting the landscape,’’ the commissioner added.