Posted by News Express | 28 September 2015 | 4,010 times
Some farmers in Hadejia, Jigawa State have commended the state government over the establishment of two sugar factories by Dangote Group and Crystal Sugar Company.
A cross section of the farmers gave the commendation in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Hadejia on Sunday.
Alhaji Idris Yau, a commercial farmer, said that the effort of state government in encouraging investment in the sector was “commendable.”
Yau said the sugar factories would generate employment and enhance wealth creation among rural farmers.
“We commend the establishment of sugarcane plantations and sugar factories in Hadejia and Kaugama local government areas of the state.
“This is a clear demonstration of the state government’s commitment to encourage investment in agriculture and manufacturing sectors.”
Malam Abdullahi Haruna, another farmer, said that the establishment of the sugar factories would encourage sugarcane farming in the state.
Haruna noted that farmers were not cultivating sugarcane due to lack of market for the produce.
“With this development, farmers who hitherto, abandoned the plantations will now cultivate sugarcane.”
NAN recalls that the Jigawa government had in the year 2000 introduced industrial sugarcane farming and established a sugar factory in Hadejia.
The government established about 5, 000 pilot sugarcane plantation in the area.
The sugar factory project was abandoned after it reached about 90 per cent completion stage, while the sugarcane plantations designed to supply raw materials to the factory wilted due to non-completion of the project.
In its drive to actualize the objectives of the sugarcane production programme, the state government had in 2013, sold the abandoned sugar factory to Crystal Sugar Company.
The state government had equally invited Dangote Group to establish another sugar factory in Kaugauma Local Government Area of the state.
Also speaking, Alhaji Muhammad Abacha, the Chairman, Crystal Sugar Company, said that the factory would produce refined sugar, animal feeds and ethanol as well as generate 150 megawatts of electricity in the state.
Abacha told NAN that the factory would engaged about 30, 000 workers from the state.
He noted that the company would require additional 30, 000 hectres of sugarcane plantation when it becomes fully operational.
On his part, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, the chairman Dangote Group, announced that his company would invest 250 million US Dollars in the proposed Sugar factory in the state.
Dangote, who stated this during a visit to the state recently, said the sugar factory was expected to commence operation later this year.
He said that about 20,000 hectares farmlands would be developed to produce sugarcane with an annual production capacity of more than 150,000 metric tonnes.
Dangote explained that some 10, 000 farmers would be engaged in sugarcane cultivation, while 13, 000 indigenes of the state would be employed as conventional factory workers.
“We are hoping to commence work in the factory before the end of the year, because production of sugar is a seasonal business and the season is quite short.”
The business mogul added that the factory would utilise products from sugarcane to produce ethanol for vehicles, fertiliser and animal feeds to boost social and economic activities for the people of the state.
NAN reports, however, that both the two factories owned by Dangote Group and Crystal Sugar Company respectively were yet to commence operation. (NAN)
•Photo shows Alh Dangote
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