Business & Economy
Experts harp on organic farming to promote food safety
The Abundance of Hope Initiative, a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) on Monday in Abuja, stressed the need for farmers to engage in organic farming crucial in ensuring food safety in the country.
The Executive Director of the organisation, Mr Taiye Sasona, said this at an advocacy programme to commemorate the 2021 World Food Safety Day and sensitise youths to understand the importance of food safety.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the World Food Safety Day celebrated every June 7, aims to draw attention and inspire action to help prevent, detect and manage foodborne risks.
The 2021 edition is with the theme `Safe Food Today for a Healthy Tomorrow’.
Sasona stressed that production and consumption of safe food had immediate and long term benefits for people, the planet and the economy.
According to him, recognising the systematic connections between the health of people, animals, planets, the environment and the economy will help us meet the needs of the future.
“Before now, most youths don’t understand what we mean by food safety, so we are now saying that the food that we consume starts from how you produce it to how it gets to the table.
“This is because organic commodities are of less chemical components.
“This tries to recognise the global burden of foodborne diseases, which affect individuals of all ages, in particular children under five and persons living in low-income countries,’’ Sasona said.
He emphasised that food safety was a shared responsibility between governments, producers and consumers.
“Everyone has a role to play from farm to table to ensure the food we consume is safe and healthy,’’ Sasona said.
He said “One of the most common illnesses that result from the consumption of contaminated food is the diarrhoeal disease which result to 550 million illnesses and causes 230,000 deaths every year according to Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO).
Keynote speaker at the event, Mr Opialu Opialu, said that the problem of food safety started from the generation of fertilizers and other chemicals `which we thought was a faster means of getting good agricultural yields’.
According to him, the chemical residues that enhance crop growth gave rise to food poison which is not good for the body.
“The way to achieve food safety is to go back to the kind of agriculture which the people of old practiced that is without the use of chemical fertilizers.
“The essence of food safety day is to ensure that we are protected by what we eat and this is everyone’s business because we all are involved in the process that leads to the safety and unsafety of food.
“The reason why we insist on organic agriculture is because the application of non-chemicals enhance the soil unlike chemicals that can cause degradation in the soil.
Mrs Agnes Olorunmotito, an agric expert, expressed worry that most of the foods consumed in Nigeria were chemically produced.
While giving examples of people ripening fruits such as bananas, mangos, plantains with chemicals, she cautioned that the practice was destructive to human health.
Olorunmotito pointed out that some of the benefits of organic farming included building the organic system, natural and better taste which stems from the well balanced and nourished soil.
She added that organic farming prioritises quality over quantity, conserves agricultural diversities and improves vitamins and nutrient of the body.
On her part, Patience Braimoh, also an expert, said that collaboration was needed globally, regionally and locally across sectors within the government and across borders to combat outbreaks of foodborne diseases and ensure safe foods globally.
“Safe food is critical not only to better health and food security, but also for livelihoods, economic development, trade and the international reputation of every country,’’ Braimoh said.
She emphasised that foodborne disease impedes socio-economic development by straining healthcare systems.
“A zero hunger world can only be achieved if the food consumed is safe.
“This world food safety day and everyday, let’s all decide and act to make sure food safety is everyone’s business,’’ she said. (NAN)
Business & Economy
Dangote Refinery Will Generate ‘Massive Job Opportunities’ – Aliko
The President of The Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote, on Monday, said his refinery will generate “massive” job opportunities for the teeming Nigerian youths.
He stated this in Lagos during the commissioning of the 650,000 bpd Dangote Petroleum Refinery and Petrochemicals by President Muhammadu Buhari.
The project is expected to churn out Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), diesel (AGO), aviation jet fuel and Dual-Purpose Kerosene (DPK), among other refined products.
“The refinery operation will generate massive job opportunities in their hundreds of thousands,” he said while highlighting the benefits of the refinery.
“The refinery will make available to our industries vital raw materials to a large range of manufacturers in the pharmaceuticals, food, beverages, construction and many other industries.”
The businessman also expressed thanks for the “massive” support for him and The Dangote Group towards the creation of the Dangote Petroleum Refinery and Petrochemicals plant.
He appreciated Buhari and Nigerians for the immeasurable support his company received from the inception of the project to its completion.
“What I want to share with Nigerians is actually to show my personal gratitude and that of The Dangote Group, for all the assistance that we got from the President, from the Federal Government of Nigeria, from even the President-elect, because he also set the pace by creating the Lekki Free Trade Zone as part of his dream.
“And also we want to thank most especially Governor Fashola, Governor Ambode and most especially Governor Sanwo-Olu; because they have given us all the assistance that we were looking for.
“We thank all Nigerians for giving us their support which is too numerous to mention,” the industrialist said.
Business & Economy
Dangote Refinery To Generate 12,000 Megawatts Of Electricity – CBN
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has said that the newly inaugurated Dangote Petroleum Refinery and Petrochemicals will help Nigeria generate more power for its electricity sector.
Speaking today at the inauguration in Lagos State, Governor of the apex bank, Mr Godwin Emefiele, said the Dangote Refinery is expected to generate 12,000 megawatts of electricity.
He further stated that over 135,000 permanent jobs will be available to Nigerians as operations get underway.
According to him, it is also expected that the refinery saves Nigeria between $25 and $30 billion in forex annually.
Like a venture that continues to give, the refinery Emefiele says will further give the economy an inflow of $10billion yearly.
In his opinion, the Dangote Refinery is an indication that Nigeria can produce whatever it Needs.
Business & Economy
SANWO-OLU PRAISES BUHARI, TINUBU, DANGOTE CONTRIBUTIONS TO NIGERIA’S FIRST PRIVATE REFINERY
•LASG has provided enabling environment for private sector growth, says Dangote
Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Monday, said the stories of President Muhammadu Buhari; President-elect, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and Chairman of Dangote Group, Alhaji Aliko Dangote are a testament that prosperity can be achieved when leaders have shared vision for the people they are leading.
Sanwo-Olu shared three different stories on how President Buhari, Asiwaju Tinubu and Dangote are connected to the newly commissioned first privately owned refinery in Nigeria, the Dangote Petroleum Refinery in Ibeju-Lekki, Lagos, said the three leaders have shown Nigerians that leadership is about consistency and commitment to Nigeria’s economic growth.
He said: “The vision of Aliko Dangote, President Muhammadu Buhari and incoming President Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, is a story of possibility when men have a shared common vision, purpose and they have the possibility that things can happen, things can change and things can be prosperous for the people they are leading.
“These three men; Aliko Dangote, President Muhammadu Buhari, and President-elect Bola Ahmed Tinubu epitomise all the great qualities of great leadership. They have shown us that nothing can be something. They have shown us that leadership is about consistency. It is about showing that whatever it is that you believe in, give it all it takes and at the end of it you will see the results coming out.”
Governor Sanwo-Olu while commending Dangote, said the business mogul is a completely detribalised Nigerian who has impacted many lives positively.
He said: “To our son Alhaji Aliko Dangote, we are indeed truly proud that you have put Nigeria and indeed Africa on that world map in which you have done the very first. We are proud of your belief in your country and your belief in the youth that you are giving the opportunity to. We are proud of the fact that you are a Nigerian that is completely detribalised and you have imbibed it in many ways.
“It is about the opportunity this (refinery) has provided for all the youth and young people of our country. It is about the fact we can say to them the work these three men – Mr. President, Alhaji Dangote, and our incoming president have done and will continue to do.
“It is about our future. It is about providing an opportunity for the youth because over 150,000 direct and indirect jobs that will be created are for our youths; young leaders that are in their 20s and their 30s for them to believe that indeed Nigerian is a place for them. Nigeria considers them as an important and veritable tool in developing and ensuring the very best.
“I want to also thank our President-elect who propelled a vision of what we are enjoying today. As governor and as Lagosian, he was the main architect of the modern history of the trajectory of Lagos and we are hopeful and praying that when he comes in as president, all of those additional vision that he has will come to reality.”
Governor Sanwo-Olu, who was part of the birth of the Lekki free zone in 2006 during the tenure of Tinubu as Governor of Lagos State, praised the host communities for showing hospitality to investors in the area.
“I want to use this opportunity to thank our host community. This community has been the host to several firsts in our country and I want to thank all of them; from the traditional rulers to all of the indigenous citizens that have continued to reflect the true spirit of Lagos to be able to show hospitality and accommodation in everything that we are about,” he said.
Governor Sanwo-Olu also commended President Muhammadu Buhari’s eight years in office, saying the people of Lagos State are proud of what the President has done for Nigeria.
He said: “You (President) have spent 2,915 days out of 2,922 days that you have. Mr. President, you have spent 99.98 percent of your time. Mr President history will certainly judge you well. We in Lagos are happy. This is your third trip to the Lekki Free Zone in less than a year.
“We are proud of you. We are indeed excited that you have thrown everything you have into it and as you bow down, I might not have the opportunity of holding a microphone again, I want to say to you, that on behalf of Lagos State, we are truly proud of the things that you have done for us in this country.”
Speaking earlier, Dangote commended Lagos State Government under the leadership of Governor Sanwo-Olu for providing an enabling environment for private sector growth, particularly the Dangote Refinery.
He said: “Lagos State Government has been exceptionally remarkable in their efforts toward the completion of this project.
“The Lagos State Government under the leadership of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu has provided an enabling environment for private sector growth in the state and this project. It has allowed us to invest over $30 billion in different sectors of the industry.”
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