Abia State Govt. Private Investor In Huge Palm Production Agreement

palm production in Abia StateAbia State government has signed an agreement with a private investor that may see the state become the largest palm producer in Nigeria.

The State government says the Memorandum of Understanding will produce an Abia State Palm Estate in Ohambele in Ukwa East Local Government Area of the state to increase the wealth of the State.

The Palm Estate is expected to support the governor’s drive to restore the state as the number one palm producer and create jobs for youths.

The Commissioner for Agriculture, Mr Uzo Azubuike, assured the investor that the state government would keep their part of the agreement.

He highlighted that the state government was in a hurry to return the state to the years of palm plantations dotting the landscape of the state.

“Part of what we are signing now is that the private investor, S-ATM Nigeria Limited will build an oil mill inside the Palm Estate here in Ohambele.

“This palm estate is expected to employ more than 5,000 Abians, with greater percentage of the employment from the Ohambele community.

“The government will leave no stone unturned in bringing to materialisation one of the pillars of this administration in the area of revitalisation of agriculture,” he told the investor.

Meanwhile, the investor and his bankers expressed appreciation to the State government for providing the enabling environment for them to do business in the state without excessive bureaucratic bottlenecks.

The Managing Director of S-ATM Nigeria Limited, Mr Ogunleye , assured the state government that his company would fulfill the terms of the agreement which include investing the needed funds to realise the goals of the state palm plantation which is to reduce unemployment.

“My assurance to you is that more than 40 per cent of the company’s employees will be Abia residents and also the members of the host community, thereby reducing the rate of unemployment in the state,” he told the state government official.

The investor and his bankers expressed appreciation to the State government for providing the enabling environment for new investors to do business in the state without excessive bureaucratic bottlenecks.

Abia Govt. Reduces State University Fees To Train Street Hawkers

okezie ikpeazu, Abia State,The Abia State Government in line with its transformation in the education sector has approved reduction of fees in the state owned university, as a measure to reach out to the poor and encourage indigenes of the state.

According to the Commissioner for Information, Comrade Bonnie Iwuoha, the executive council has given approval for a reduction of 10,000 Naira in the school fees payable by Abia state indigenes in the Abia state University, Uturu.

The beneficiaries are however to present the tax receipts of their parents or guardians which are to be proved through biometrics.

The information boss also disclosed that the Ministry of Woman Affairs is to collaborate with institutions to provide a better living condition, for those hawking on the streets by building more skill acquisition centres to train them to be self-reliant.

Abia Govt. Partners Australian Investors On Education

Abia, EducationThe Abia State government has partnered private investors from Australia to train primary school teachers across the three senatorial zones of the state.

This was disclosed to reporters on Thursday at the Government House in Umuahia, the Abia State’s capital in southeast Nigeria after a private audience between the foreigners and Governor Okezie Ikpeazu.

The leader of the team, Vivian Peters, and her group promised to provide expertise free of charge in line with the global standard in education.

Some Australian educationists, Alder Wood and Sakira Suma, also said that the exercise would be carried out in accordance with the Abia State government’s policy on educational development.

The training, which is expected to kick off immediately would be on classroom management and teachers-students relationship amongst others.

Traders Criticise Planned Demolition Of Market In Abia

Ariaria International Market-Traders-AbiaTraders at the Ariaria International Market in Aba have raised alarm over the alleged planned demolition of the market by the Abia State government in southeast Nigeria.

The market men and women described the purported act as an exercise in futility and called on the government to focus on fixing the deplorable roads and upgrade the facility in the markets.

During a press briefing in Aba on Monday, the Chairman of the National Association of Nigerian Traders in the market, Mr Michael Anibogu, condemned the alleged plan, saying that the market was their only source of income and gratuity.

He maintained that the traders would resist any attempt by the committee set up by government to demolish their shops.

In his reaction, the Chairman of the Abia State Market Development Committee, Solomon Wigwe, clarified that the state government had no intention to demolish the market.

He, however, explained that some sections were marked for demolition.

According to him, the sections to be brought down were the illegal structures erected on the walk ways and drainage.

Wigwe said that the exercise would be carried out in phases and aimed to develop the existing markets to an enviable standard.

Abia, South Korea In Trade And Agriculture Partnership

Abia-South-Korea-Agriculture-TradeThe Abia State government and South Korea Republic are considering a partnership in agriculture and small and medium scale industries.

Governor Okezie Ikpeazu made the plan known on Friday after talks with the South Korean Ambassador to Nigeria, Noh Kyu Duk, at the Government House in Umuahia, the capital of Abia State.

He said that the focus was to enhance trade and commerce especially in Aba which had about 15 markets.

The Governor added that there were at least 40,000 shoemakers and garment manufacturers in Aba and stressed the need to automate the manufacturing process to make consistent quality within a short period.

He also solicited for equipment and expertise from South Korea.

Governor Ikpeazu expressed hope that the plan would enhance a free trade zone, as efforts were being made to fix Ariaria International Market which was the third largest market in West Africa and make it an all season market.

In his response, Mr Noh Kyu said his mission was to enhance bilateral relations between Nigeria and South Korea, stressing that South Korea had a lot to offer in agriculture, leather and textile industries among other areas.

He added that Abia State was important because of the huge trade and economic activities that take place in the state while and invited a delegation from the state led by Governor Ikpeazu to visit South Korea to see areas of interest especially the rural agriculture settlement.

Abia Commissioner Condemns Alleged Invasion Of His Privacy

AbiaAbia State Commissioner of Works, Honourable Eziuche Ubani, has described the invasion of his residence by men of the DSS and the Nigerian Army as unwarranted and unacceptable.

Mr Ubani said this on Wednesday while narrating the incident to reporters at his residence at Ovom in Obingwa Local Government Area.

He said that men of the Department of State Service (DSS) and the Nigerian Army came in six Hilux vans at 2:00AM, broke his gate and gained entry into his house by climbing the wall as they held him hostage for four hours.

According to the Commissioner, the team, led by Stephen Agu of the Directorate of State Services (DSS), Abuja said they heard a report from the opposition that he was stock piling arms and training people to assassinate leaders of the All Progressives Grand Alliance.

He said the team thoroughly searched his house including the water tank, broke his wardrobe and climbed the ceiling after which they wrote on a paper that they found nothing incriminating in the house.

Mr Ubani noted that if state institutions would be used to harass innocent Nigerians, then he wonders where the country was heading to.

He called on those funding disturbances in Abia State to stop forthwith, warning that the government would not condone violence in any guise.

Reacting to the invasion, Abia State Government demanded an unreserved apology from the security agencies, noting that it felt concerned and embarrassed by the action.

Abia Government Pledges Commitment To Promote Culture, Tourism

IkpeazuAbia State Government has pledged its commitment to promote culture and tourism as a revenue yielding source in the state.

The State Government made the pledge at the maiden edition of the Enyimba Cultural carnival at the Abia State polytechnic, Aba on Friday.

The Commissioner for Information and Culture, Comrade Bonnie Iwuoha, while Speaking to Channels Television said that one of the aims of the carnival was to keep the youths busy and away from crime during the festive period.

Comrade Iwuoha appreciated Abians in sustaining their traditional values and hinted that the whole event and activities would showcase the peaceful atmosphere of Aba, the commercial city of the state, with intention to woo more investments.

17 local government areas participated in the carnival that featured exhibition of the various rich cultural value of the people of Abia State.

Abia Govt. To Pay Workers Outstanding Arrears

abia stateAbia State Government has assured Workers in the state that it is working round the clock to ensure that the arrears of salaries are cleared through the use of the bailout funds.

However, the Chairman of Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) in the state, Comrade Uche Obigwe, has hinted that the bailout funds given to the state would not be enough to pay up the gratuities. This insinuation is not going down well with the NLC faction led by Comrade Christopher Ezekiel, who thinks that the credibility of the bailout committee should be questioned.

The Abia State Government had given the state bailout committee till the end of October 2015.

Meanwhile, Economic Adviser to Abia State Government, Obinna Oriaku, said that challenges are coming from the fact that the state government applied for arrears of wages of about 39 billion naira, but was given only 14.1 billion naira.

Mr. Oriaku added that not withstanding the shortfalls, they are doing everything to clear all the arrears, also urging all to be patient. He also hinted that there are challenges with the payment of the Abia State Universal Basic Education (ASUBEB) and pensioners where verifications are currently ongoing to fish out ghost workers.

Abia Government Frowns At Protest Against Tribunal Judgement

Abia Government Frowns At Protest Against Tribunal JudgementsThe Abia State government has warned the opposition party to refrain from making unguarded statements that are capable of inciting the public and heating up the polity.

The Chief Press Secretary to Governor Ikpeazu, Godwin Adindu, said that the attempts and actions of some elements, especially the major opposition party in the state to malign and assassinate the integrity of members of the Election Petition Tribunal sitting in the state is totally uncalled for.

The All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) supporters had protested in Umuahia, Abia State capital in south-east Nigeria against the outcome of some of the Election Petition Tribunal judgment.

Describing the judgment as an ‘injustice and rape to democracy’, the angry protesters carried placards with various inscriptions – “God, come to our rescue”, “We want justice”, “APGA leaders, can you recover our mandate” – as they marched to the APGA Secretariat.

The Chairman of the party described the judgments as an injustice to democracy with a promise that the leadership of the party would reclaim their mandate.

Abia Govt. Begins Recall Of Disengaged Non-Indigene Staff

abiaThe Abia State Government has started executing the implementation process of total reabsorbing of the non-indigene staff that were disengaged some years back.

Governor Okezie Ikpeazu, during an interactive session with them at Umuahia, said that government was willingly to recall all of them in a systematic procedure, so as not to take more than it can afford to pay.

Calling on them to co-operate, he said that the ongoing civil service biometric verification has created opportunities that close up loopholes of wastage.

Although some of the disengaged workers expressed appreciation for the effort, they appealed to government to recover them at once because the suffering and state of unemployment was taking a toll on their families.

Out of about 4,000 non-indigene workers of Abia State that were disengaged, only more than 2,000 have been recalled to work, while processes are on going to reinstate the others.

Ikpeazu Flags-Off 2016 Budget, Promises Quality Management In Civil Service

Okezie Ikpeazu-budgetAbia State Governor, Okezie Ikpeazu, has promised to ensure quality management in the civil service.

The governor said this during the flag-off of the state’s 2016 Budget, tagged “Budget of Restoration through Enterprise”.

The budget, according to the governor, is designed to create a state in which enterprise and hard work would be a parameter for which the citizenry are graded.

The budget is aimed at cutting cost and to discourage those who sabotage government efforts towards development .

According to the governor, with more accountability and management, more would be achieved in infrastructural development.

Governor Ikpeazu also said that the state was in collaboration with some health experts, hinting that one of America’s foremost inventors in cancer machines would soon visit the state to explore the possibility of establishing a factory in the state.

 

APGA Accuses Abia Govt. Of Indifference Towards Otti’s Alleged Robbery Attack

APGA Berates Abia State Government Over Otti's Alleged Robbery AttackThe All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) has accused the Abia State Government of being indifferent towards the alleged robbery attack at the Abuja residence of its governorship candidate, Dr. Alex Otti.

The Abia State Chairman of the party, Augustine Ehiemere, said this on Thursday during a press conference in Umuahia, the state capital.

Ehiemere said that the action of the state government was a rude shock as they were treating the matter with kids glove.

He, therefore, called on the Inspector-General of Police, Solomon Arase, to thoroughly investigate the matter.

Meanwhile, the Chief Press Secretary to the State Government, Godwin Adindu, has said that APGA was simply raising a false alarm.

According to the Governor’s spokesman, the robbery incident only happened around the vicinity where he resides and not targeted directly at him.