FEC approves eight draft bills on agric, transport

GEJ @ FEC

By Olanrewaju Ajao               The Federal Executive Council has approved eight draft bills on agriculture, transport and roads to be sent to the National Assembly.
The Council in its second meeting of the year, chaired by President Goodluck Jonathan discussed three major issues, the approval of the report of the cabinet committee on the transport sector reform draft bill, the approval of the draft for the establishment of the national agency for the great green wall, and the approval of the draft national policy on staple crops processing zones.
These major bills according to Presidential spokesman, Reuben Abati, constituted a major breakthrough in the efforts by the administration to continue to strengthen the various sectors of the economy.
Abati, who briefed alongside the Ministers of Trade and Investment, Segun Aganga, Environment, Laurencia
Laraba Malam, Agriculture and Rural Development, Akinwunmi Adeshina, Transport, Idris Umar and Works, Mike Onolememen, said the draft bills are to be forwarded with immediate effect to the National Assembly for consideration and passage.
‎The transport sector Bills, are ‎the National Transport Commission Bill (2015); ‎National Roads Fund Bill; ‎and the Federal ‎Roads Authority Bill‎.
‎The rest are Nigeria Ports and Harbour Authority Bill (2015); ‎National Inland Waterways Authority Bill (2015); and Nigeria Railway Authority Bill (2015) as well as the ‎Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Bill‎.
Speaking more on the approved draft bills, National Policy on Staple Crops Processing Zones, Governor Idris Wada of Kogi State,‎ whose state is the pioneer state in setting up of a staple crops processing zone in Alape, Kabba Bunu local council area of the state, explained that he had earmarked 15 hectares of land for the project which is expected to provide about 10 job opportunities to people of the state.
According to him: “Kogi is the pioneer staple crop processing zone for cassava. We have cassava processing zone in Alape in Kabba-Bunu local government area of Kogi state.
“We have been working closely with the federal Ministry of Agriculture on this project. We have allocated 15,000 hectares of land, perimeter surveys have been done.
“The local communities are very excited about the project in partnership with Tagel and a lot of work has been done environmental and social are going on.
“The interests of small holder-farmers are accommodated in the whole project. Settlers in the area are not going to be disrupted; the World Bank is involved so everything is done to international standard.
“We believe that this will transform the rural economy of the Kabba-Bunu local government area and adjourning local government in Kogi State.
“There will be massive jobs opportunities where it is estimated that at least 10,000 jobs will be created when this project takes off fully.
“Young boys and girls who are unemployed will have opportunity of employment, it will encourage young people to go into agriculture and those already in agriculture will have improved wealth to live better with the infrastructure that will come in. They will have better quality of life and other opportunities that will arise from the cassava staple crop processing zone.
“As a pioneer project, our government has shown very firm commitments and political will for the success of this project and we will do everything to make sure that the project succeeds.‎”
‎Concerning the Great Green Wall Authority bill, Minister of Environment, Laraba Malam, explained that the projects covers 11 frontline states in the northern part of the country prone to desertification.
The states are Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Sokoto, Kebbi, Kano, Jigawa, Katsina, Yobe and Zamfara.
‎It will also cover 305 communities across 46 local government councils, she added.

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