In a move to develop a strong food production system, backed up by cutting edge technology that would tackle the challenge of food security in the Niger Delta region, the Nigerian Agip Oil Company Green River Project has empowered farmers and co-operative societies of host communities in their operation areas in Imo, Delta, Bayelsa and Rivers States.
In his address the Managing Director, NAOC, Mr Ciro Antonio Pagano, at the 14th NAOC-GRP farmers Day celebration held at Obie in Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni local government area of Rivers State on Saturday, said the Green River project has for 22 years maintained the target of improving the standard of living of the rural farmers in its operation areas, noting that over 50,000 farm families have benefited directly or indirectly from the project activities.
According to him, “we have over 250 active co-operative societies with total membership of 106,300 farmers. We provide farm inputs technical services, capacity building including training to the members. GRP provide cassava stem, seed yams, plantain suckers, fish fingerling livestock, fertilizers and agrochemicals at no cost as part of input to boost farmers production capacity”.
The managing Director, said that value was added to the farm produce by providing agro-processing equipment such as palm oil mills, cassava processing mills, plantain flour mill, chorkor (fish smoking kiln) across the region, adding that this year, five agro-processing mills have been commissioned in Obor and Okposi in ONELGA, Rivers state, Ogume in Ndokwa West LGA, Irri in Isoko South LGA, Delta state and Ukpeliede in Ahoada West LGA, Rivers State and yet to commission another two in Imo and Bayelsa State respectively.
In the past four years, NAOC has disbursed over N80 million micro-credit to farmers cooperative societies, youths and women groups, he added.
In his speech, the Regional Head, National Agricultural Seed Council (NASC) South East Regional Office, Umudike, Dr EC Okoli emphasized the importance of improved seeds noting that the major challenge facing farmers in the country is the use of low-yeild seeds. He called for a systematic sensitisation on the use of improved seeds by farmers through the establishment of ideal seed farm De-monstration centres in all NAOC/GRP farm locations.
The Director General, Raw Material Research and Development Council, Prof Peter Onwualu who was represented by Mrs Felicia Chilaka commended NAOC GRP for migrating from oil to soil now that the country is in need of resource diversification especially in agriculture. She expressed the willingness of RMRDC to collaborate with NAOC GRP in boosting agricultural development in the region. Highlights of the occasion include presentation of prices to award winners in this years farmers Day celebration and cultural displays.
NSE Begins Week On Negative Note, Loses N19.49bn
The Nigerian stock market began the week on a negative note as banking and consumer goods stocks, among others, triggered a N19.49bn loss.
At the end of trading on the floor of the Nigerian Exchange Limited , the NGX All-Share Index dropped by 0.09 per cent to end at 43,270.94 basis points, while the market capitalisation declined to N22.58tn.
Market activities were mixed as the total volume of shares traded decreased by 30.19 per cent while the value traded rose by 34.05 per cent.
A total of 213.13 million shares valued at N2.36bn were exchanged in 4,105 deals, compared to 305.32 million shares worth N3.58bn in 4,450 deals last Friday.
FCMB Group Plc topped the traded stocks in terms of volume, accounting for 27.43 per cent of the total volume of trades while Airtel Africa Plc emerged as the most traded stock by value, representing 28.81 per cent of the total value of trades on the exchange.
14 firms gained compared to 21 losers.
AIICO Insurance Plc was the biggest gainer for the day, topping the gainers’ chart with a price appreciation of 8.57 per cent to N0.76 per share.
It was followed by LivingTrust Mortgage Bank Plc with a rise of 7.95 per cent, ending the day at N0.95 per share.
Analysing by sectors, three of the five major indices closed lower, led by NGX Oil & Gas (-0.56 per cent), NGX Consumer Goods (-0.23 per cent) and NGX Banking (0.18 per cent).
But the insurance (0.82 per cent) and industrial goods (0.002 per cent) indices gained at the end of trading.
… Introduces TIES To Boost Business Loan
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has introduced the Tertiary Institutions Entrepreneurship Scheme (TIES), which provides undergraduates and graduates with a platform to access loans.
The TIES’ underlying aim is to provide access to capital for Nigerian undergraduates and graduates with innovative entrepreneurial and technological ideas from polytechnics and universities.
TIES intends to shift undergraduates and graduates away from white-collar job pursuits and towards a culture of entrepreneurship development for economic development and job creation.
In a national biennial entrepreneurship competition, the Developmental Component would be distributed in the form of awards to Nigerian polytechnics and universities.
The competition aims to increase undergraduates’ awareness and visibility of high-impact entrepreneurial/technological concepts, foster entrepreneurial talent hunts in Nigerian polytechnics and universities, and encourage commercially viable and transformative technologies.
Interested Nigerian polytechnics and universities shall apply to participate in the national biennial entrepreneurship competition on a dedicated online portal.
Outlining brief details of the project, potential impact and evidence of originality of project, CBN said it is an innovation for students entrepreneurs.
CITN Applauds FG, Tax Authorities On Fiscal Policy Decisions
The Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN) has lauded the Federal Government and tax authorities on the giant strides made on fiscal policy decisions and tax administration measures initiated this year in the area of Finance Act 2021 and the introduction of TaxPromax solution.
President of the institute, Adesina Adedayo, who gave the commendation at the institute’s yearly award ceremony at the weekend in Lagos, assured the government and tax authorities of aligning with the measures and promised to provide professional thoughts and insights on ways through which they could achieve an efficient and effective Nigerian tax system.
Adedayo emphasised the need to address the database, adding that without knowing who the tax-payers are, there is no way they can take money from unknown tax-payers.
Database is the aspect we have been emphasising on as an institute and in doing this, there are so many of pockets of data we have. All the data must be harmonised to have a simple unique tax-payers identification number,” he said.
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