Imo To Get Whopping $120million for the Special Agro-Processing Industrial Zone Project, Says Gov. Uzodimma

Martin Okorowu, Owerri

Governor of Imo State, Senator Hope Uzodimma has announced that Imo out of the 7 states of the Federation penciled down for the Special Agro-Processing Industrial Zone (SAPZ) project is in the front line to benefit from the programme.

The governor spoke last Sunday while addressing the congregation at a special Church Service at the Government House Chapel, Owerri ahead of Nigeria’s 61st Independence Day Celebration on Friday, October 1, 2021.

“The Federal Government has graciously included Imo State as a beneficiary of her special Agric Processing Zone Project for Livestock and out of the seven states in the country that the Federal Government is billed to spend $850 million, Imo State is number two and will get a whopping $120million”, he said.

SAPZs are designed to concentrate agro-processing activities within areas of high agricultural potential.
They enable agricultural producers, processors, aggregators and distributors to operate in one vicinity reducing transaction costs and sharing business development services for increased productivity
and competitiveness.

It is a donor agency project to be counterpart funded by FGN, African Development Bank(AfDB), International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), Africa Growing Together Fund (AGTF) et al and is targeted at providing a central spot for assemblage and processing Agro produce of locals for export purposes to create better value chain for our farmers and part of the reason Imo State was selected is because she has a cargo Airport.

Meanwhile weeks before now, Ejemekwuru and Ohaoma communities of Oguta Local Government Areas of Imo State have petitioned and staged protests to the state government over attempts to appropriate their communal lands for supposedly agricultural project which the communities link to the Federal Government’s RUGA project.

Office of the Deputy Governor and the State’s Ministry of Agriculture charged with the responsibility to see to the implementation of this project, has been engaging the leadership of the proposed host communities of this project.

The Deputy Governor, Prof. Placid Njoku in a recent meeting with select leaders of the communities hinted that the new project is not linked nor tied in anyway with the suspended RUGA project of the Federal Government. He stated that Agro-Processing is not same with rearing or ranching cattles, that processing actually involves transformation of those livestock to finished goods ready for consumption as in diary milk, con beef and so on.

He therefore charged the people to jettison the propaganda and campaign of calumny propagated by agents the opposition to mislead and malign the public as such arrangement as RUGA does not and cannot exist in any guise under the Shared Prosperity of Gov. Uzodimma.

It was however agreed that the government must do more in terms of orientation and hold town hall meetings with the proposed host communities for them to have a feel of what the SAPZ actually is and the gains it portends.

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Okokobioko

Okokobioko.com is a blog dedicated to serving keeping you abreast of happenings in in around your environs. Martin Okorowu the Publisher of Okokobioko.com is a Process Engineer in Training and a Digital Marketing Pro with strengths in Content Development and Marketing.

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