Nigeria to spend N10.7billion on rice mills, N68.6 billion on road projects

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Nigeria’s cabinet, the Federal Executive Council (FEC), Thursday April 26, 2018 approved N10.7billion for the establishment of 10 new rice mills and N68.6 billion for road projects across the country, the ministers of state for agriculture, Heneiken Lokpobiri and minister of power, works and housing, Babatunde Fashola,said, following the meeting chaired by the President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

Lokpobiri said the approved rice mills with a capacity to produce 100 tonnes per day would be managed by private rice millers, noting they would be cited in Kebbi, Zamfara, Benue, Kogi, Bayelsa, Anambra, Kaduna, Ogun, Niger and Bauchi states.

“A few years ago it was reported that this country needs a minimum of 100 large rice mills. As of today, we have about 21 but Federal Government in its wisdom decided that we approve the establishment of 10 at the total cost of N10.7billion. These would be given to the sector to manage which they will pay back within a given time frame as it would be agreed between the Bank of Agriculture and the Rice Millers,’’ he said.

According to Fashola, N64.108 billion was approved for additional work on 43 kilometers of section one of the Lagos-Ibadan expressway. The new approval, he said, would accommodate the adjustments on the project including modification of bitumen for the road to withstand pressure.

“This covers glover leaves, pedestrian bridges, and toll plazas for that section so as to accommodate changing nature of that road since conception. So many new structures, religious institutions, factories, universities and increased human activities have come up along that road which the inherited design didn’t provide for,” he said.
The minister also disclosed that N4.57 billion was approved for Sumaila-Falala-Birnin Bako-Bauchi road, linking Bauchi and Kano States.

Garba Shehu, the senior special assistant to the president on media and publicity, who also addressed the correspondents on the outcome of the meeting, disclosed that N10 billion had been approved to fight the scourge of erosion while $460 million was approved to facilitate usage of new buildings located at main airports in the country.

He said “This is the fourth quarter soil erosion, flood and pollution accelerated intervention projects worth about N10 billion. These are projects that cover the length and breadth of the country. So, government today awarded a new contract for variation and additional contracts for new passenger and cargo terminals and a lot of other works to facilitate their usage including in the case of Lagos and Abuja improvement to enable jumbo aircraft and Airbus 380 to be able to land in both cities. The rail terminal will be accessible from arrival hall in Abuja at the cost 460million dollars”.

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Godwin Okafor is a Financial Journalist, Internet Social Entrepreneur and Founder of Naija247news Media Limited. He has over 16 years experience in financial journalism. His experience cuts across traditional and digital media. He started his journalism career at Business Day, Nigeria and founded Naija247news Media in 2010. Godwin holds a Bachelors degree in Industrial Relations and Personnel Management from the Lagos State University, Ojo, Lagos. He is an alumni of Lagos Business School and a Fellow of the University of Pennsylvania (Wharton Seminar for Business Journalists). Over the years, he has won a number of journalism awards. Godwin is the chairman of Emmerich Resources Limited, the publisher of Naija247news.

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