Ben Ayade

Cross River to benefit from SAPZ as Ayade attends launch in Abuja

Cross River is among six states in Nigeria set to benefit from the Federal Government’s Special Agro-Industrial Processing Zones (SAPZ) project.

SAPZ is part of the federal government’s effort to achieve food sufficiency and end hunger in the country.

Speaking at the launch of the African Development Bank (ADB), International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) funded program, in Abuja, Monday, the governor of Cross River state, Prof Ben Ayade said the launch of SAPZ was indication that President Muhammadu Buhari’s efforts at decoupling the country from reliance on oil was yielding results.

“When President Buhari was sworn-into office in 2015, he decided to create a roadmap of Nigeria without oil. Today is the densification of the footfall of that historic drive, that Nigeria can actually have an economy independent of oil”, Ayade said.

The governor who spoke on behalf of governors of the six benefitting states, maintained that “Nigeria can actually have an economy that is truly not dependent on oil if the SAPZ initiative is fully implemented to achieve its objectives”, adding that he was passionate about transforming Cross River state into an industrialized hub, with Agriculture as key catalyst.

“As a state, we are happy to be part of the phase one of the program. We are happy that indeed you have given us an opportunity to demonstrate that Nigeria can work again”, he further said.

“You can pass the vision; you can indeed pass the project. You can pass the finance but you cannot pass the passion. The passion to actually put agriculture at forefront of this country has become very critical. So, I call on all the participating partners and particularly the Minister for Agriculture to ensure total implementation of SAPZ in the selected states in order to achieve food security in the country.

“Nigeria is the leading country in Africa, therefore if Nigeria is hungry, Africa is hungry. The only way we can stop African hunger is to ensure that every single dollar, every single coin coming out of this project has its manifestation in practical results. The empiricism of that will lead to the food sufficiency that we all seek,” the governor averred.

The programme was launched by the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbanjo.

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Posted by on Oct 25 2022. Filed under Ben Ayade Desk. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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