Oyo Govt. Hosts Amala Fiesta, Wows Participants

Oyo Govt. Hosts Amala Fiesta, Wows ParticipantsThe just concluded 3-day Amala Fiesta organized by the Oyo State government has left participants and exhibitors amazed by the benefits they can get from patronising local foods.

Participants, partners and exhibitors have commended the state government for the opportunity to promote the local food culture and specifically showcase the benefits of Amala and related agricultural produce.

They described the programme, with the theme ‘From the Farm to the Table’ as a fascinating event which the State government used to add value to the agricultural chain.

Participants said that the government, through the Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism should be applauded for the food tourism initiative with attendant multiple beneficiaries including farmers, food vendors, research institutes, corporate organisations, artisans, traders and the general public.

The participants, partners and exhibitors were representatives from Canteen Workers Association of Nigeria, Oyo State Chapter; International Institute for Tropical Agriculture, (IITA); Tourist Care and Hospitality Association of Nigeria (TCHAN); All Women Farmers Association of Nigeria, Oyo State chapter.

There were also representatives from Iseyin, Akinyele, Ibadan North, Ibadan South East local governments and Oyo State Cocoa Development Unit.

They encouraged members of the public to consume less of chemically produced foods and urged them to take more of natural foods, stressing that natural foods are more nutritious than chemically processed foods.

Biscuit From Cassava

Speaking at the closing ceremony of the fiesta at the weekend, the Director General of IITA, Nteranya Sanginga, said that the Oyo State government has helped to showcase what IITA has been researching on.

He added that the government should be commended for the opportunity given to the exhibitors and farmers to showcase the output of their researches and efforts.

According to the DG who was represented by the Head, Food and Nutrition Laboratory of the Institute, Mr. Nwaoline Gregory, “In IITA, we want food security for the country. The programme has helped to bring out what we have been researching on in IITA.

“People were surprised that we can make biscuit, chin chin and other snacks from cassava. If not for the Amala fiesta, we might not have had the opportunity to reach so many people at this particular period.

“IITA is ready for capacity building for women and youths and we will continue to give our support to farmers in the state and the country as a whole. We thank the Oyo State government for organizing this programme”, the IITA DG said.

Eating Amala With Relish

Also, President, Canteen Workers Association of Nigeria, Oyo State Chapter, Mrs. Amdalat Iyadunni Lawal said that the government should be praised for helping them to promote their trade by espousing the benefits of Amala through the event,

She said: “When we were approached, we were not keen about the programme. But during the unveiling of the logo, we became convinced about the commitments of the state government when we saw people on tie eating Amala with relish and we were more amazed when some of them requested for additional portion.”

While thanking the state government for its support to women in agriculture in the state, the President, All Women Farmers Association of Nigeria, Oyo State chapter, Mrs. Arinola Aderibigbe called for more support and empowerment for farmers in order to have massive production of agricultural produce by women who are actively involved in agriculture.

Developing Agriculture 

In its remarks at the closing ceremony, the state government assured participants, partners, exhibitors and members of the public of its continued support to the development of the agricultural sector in the state.

The government noted that it has put necessary machinery in place for farmers in the state to produce agricultural products in larger quantities.

The State Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Mr Toye Arulogun, who spoke through the Ministry’s Permanent Secretary, Dr. Bashir Olanrewaju noted that the state government has never treated issues relating to agricultural sector in the state trivially, and does not intend to.

He consequently encouraged farmers to partake in its empowerment programmes, such as Agric-Oyo.

“I want to assure participants at this fiesta, that the government is taking agriculture seriously. We are very aware of the importance of farmers in the society that is why government brought about this initiative called Agric-Oyo, which has empowered farmers across the state”.

In closing the Amala Fiesta, he said: “Let me appreciate those who made this event a success, you have contributed immensely to government’s dream in promoting our local delicacy and make it more acceptable both locally and internationally.

“Through your support and participation, the government has fulfilled the important roles of promoting our food-culture and boosting the economy of the state through job creation,” Arulogun emphasized.

Highlights at the grand-finale were presentation of gifts to the Chairperson, Association of Canteen Owners, Oyo State branch, Mrs. Amdalat Iyadunni Lawal for her contribution to the success of the event.

There were also winners in the Food Vendors Category and Exhibitors category.

Omolayo Food Canteen clinched the first position in the Food vendors’ category, while Iseyin Local Government Farmers Association walked away with the first prize in the Exhibitors Category.

Pharmacists Council Seals 234 Medicine Shops In Oyo

Pharmacists, Oyo, PCNThe Pharmacists Council of Nigeria (PCN) has sealed off 234 retail drug outlets in Oyo State.

The head of the PCN inspection team, Mrs Anthonia Aruka, revealed this to reporters after five days of monitoring and enforcement of retail drug outlets in the state.

She decried that the statistics available was worrisome as only 24 out of the 269 facilities visited across about 16 local government areas had commendable practice.

Mrs Aruka added that an alarming number of these Patent and Proprietary Medicine Vendors (PPMVs) do not conform to stipulated rules and procedures to ensure safety of their customers.

She advised the public to only patronise PCN-approved outlets for over-the-counter medicines.

The affected shops were sealed in Ibadan, Iseyin, Oyo, Saki, Eruwa and Igbo Ora towns of the state.

Apart from sealing these premises, PCN also said that the enforcement exercise would be a continuous process, adding that it would not allow the sealed shops reopen until they meet the required safety standards.

Customs To Tighten Security Along Borders

customsThe Assistant Comptroller General of the Nigeria Customs  Service in charge of zone A says efforts are ongoing to properly identify all illegal entry and exit points created by smugglers in the south-west.

Mr Eporwei  Edike added that the development came with a view to improve security and revenue in the country.

Addressing customs officers at the area headquarters of Oyo/Osun Customs Command in Ibadan, Oyo State capital, on Wednesday, Mr Edike charged them to re-dedicate themselves to selfless duty with absolute commitment to ensuring the security of the country.

At the border outstations at Igbeti, Saki and Iseyin, the Assistant Controller General assured the officers on duty that his visit was to give them a sense of belonging and let them know that their sacrifices are appreciated.

He urged the officers to do more especially in the onslaught against arms smuggling, cars and contraband items.

Some of the officers complained of inadequate logistics like: patrol cars and other necessary tools to tackle the smugglers headlong.

The Assistant Comptroller General, however, assured the officers that, the C.G of Customs would address all the shortcomings.

The Comptroller of Customs Oyo/Osun Command, Tope Ogunkua, disclosed that communal briefing and town hall meetings among local communities along border areas, would commence soon.

A traditional ruler, Onigbeti of Igbeti, said that the palace conducts regular sensitization for the locals on the essence of collaborating with security agents and the need to avoid harbouring smugglers is important.

Collation Of Results Continues Across Nigeria

ibadanThe collation of election results are ongoing across Nigeria, a day after the presidential and National Assembly elections held across the oil rich nation.

In Oyo State collation continued through the night till Sunday morning  in 11 Local Government Areas.

The collations are still on in Oyo, Ogbomosho, Iseyin, other parts of Oke Ogun and Abarapa areas of the State.

There was massive turn out of voters who got accredited and voted peacefully in Ibadan north, Ibadan north-east, Ibadan north-west,  Lagelu , Akinyele , Ona Ara south-west, Egbede, Ogbomosho south and Ogbomosho north.

However, issues of card reader failure were recorded in about five units in ward 9 in Ibadan South-west Local Government Area and Ogbomosho North where the House Leader, Mulikat Akande Adeola, had to wash her hands with soap more than five times, trying to ensure the card reader read his finger print.

Meanwhile, there had not been any reported case of violence or electoral malpractice yet, except for a man caught by the Oyo State police command with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Permanent Voter Card register on the eve of elections.

Reporters are waiting at the Independent National Electoral Commission’s headquarters in the State to see which results are being brought in.

But no collation centre has submitted results yet.

Kaduna Collation

In Kaduna State, collation of results has commenced across the 255 wards and 23 Local Government Areas.

Channels Television’s correspondent monitoring the exercise reports that the process is peaceful and orderly, with party supporters keeping an eagle eye on the electoral officials counting the results.

This is to ensure that there is no manipulation of votes along the way until the final results are announced by the commission.

Party agents, security officials and electoral officials slept at the various collation centres, while awaiting the arrival of polling agents.

At Rigachikun Ward in Igabi Local Government Area and Ungwar Seriki ward in Kaduna North Local Government Area, there was heavy security presence to ensure a hitch free exercise.

Electoral officials and some party agents described the election as peaceful and transparent, as party supporters expressed hope of victory at the end of the entire exercise.

At the end of collation of results at the Local Government level, all election results would be moved to the State Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) office for final collation and delivery to the commission’s headquarters in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital.

Ondo Collation

In Ondo State, election results collation started at about 9:45am local time at the St. Peter’s Unity Secondary School, Akure, the collation centre for Ondo Central Senatorial District.

The Six Local Government Areas in the district are; Akure South, Akure North, Ondo West, Ondo East, Idanre and Ifedore.

Amongst these Local Government Areas, only those from Akure South and Ifedore had arrived at the collation centre. The officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) are collating the results. The electoral body said it was  expecting results from the remaining Four Local Government Areas.

The atmosphere is calm and there is huge presence of armed military men and policemen.

 

Customs Alert Nigerians Of Illegally Smuggled Rice

nigeria-customs-service

The Nigeria Customs Service has warned Nigerians to be wary of the consumption of contaminated rice that could be illegally smuggled into the country through neighbouring African countries.

The area comptroller Oyo/Oshun command of Customs, Richard Oteri, who gave the warning at the headquarters of the command in Ibadan on Saturday, told Channels Television exclusively that some of the rice seized from smugglers by his team were not good for consumption.

While disclosing the large seizure that was made along the Iseyin/Saki axis of Oyo State, the area comptroller advised consumers to check rice properly in the market before purchase, as some of the contaminated ones could be re-bagged and sold to Nigerians.

Oteri pointed out that smugglers may use the festive season to perpetuate their nefarious activities and bring in contraband goods, but he stressed that the command was “ready to make sure they do not succeed”.

A total of 1,300 bags of 50kg rice with a duty paid value of 16 million Naira were seized by the crack team led by Alajogun Joseph.

Oteri further stated that the importation of rice through Nigeria’s sea ports was the only allowed form of importation. “All those importers who bring in  rice through neighbouring African countries will continue to be treated as smugglers with the full weight of the law bearing on them,” he said..