The Governor of Oyo state, Seyi Makinde, on Monday, hosted the Governor of Borno State, Babangana Zulum in Ibadan, who was in town to visit the NIJI agro-tech facilities located at km 6, Ibadan Abeokuta road, Odo-Ona, Apata, Ibadan.
Represented by his deputy, Barrister Abdul-Raheem Adebayo Lawal, who received Prof Zulum at the Ladoke Akintola airport in Alakia, also accompanied him and his team to the Niji Group’s agricultural machinery and equipment facilities.
During the inspection, the visiting governor, Babangana Zulum commended Governor Makinde for establishing a public private partnership with locals especially NIJI groups with a view of harnessing the potentials of moribund industries in the state.
“I think this is the wisdom that other states need to emulate. This is a very good thing”, Zulum said.
Zulum reiterated that he’s determined to see how Borno state government will partner with local engineers with a view to addressing some of the state’s challenges, adding that if the country continue to produce and export, the issue of dollars scarcity would be addressed.
He said: “One of the major reasons of Nigeria problems is that we don’t produce. We can’t export. So, where do we get the foreign exchange.
“We shouldn’t blame the federal government because the Nigeria population is growing and we can’t produce. What we ought to have seen now is sustainable development”.
The Borno governor promised that his team would meet with the management of Niji groups to discuss how to work together as the Borno government is prepared to invest in commercial agriculture.
He equally hinted that the Borno government is ready to invest in medium and longer term solutions to address agricultural challenges, which is the reason they are in Oyo state inspecting things in terms of machinery that are located in the part of the state.
While commending the company for changing the narrative of agriculture, he noted that the Borno state government is ready to work with the company in establishing groundnut oil processing mill among others.
Earlier in his presentation, the CEO of the Niji groups, Niji Lukas, who disclosed that his company moved from Lagos to Ibadan over a year ago, however noted that they are concerned about changing the narration of food since 1991 of its establishment.
He added that some of the farm produce of the company include fufu, yam flour, cassava starch, Garri, among others stressing that the company is solving problems of industrial spare parts that would have been imported by using local raw materials.