Lagos State Governor, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode on Tuesday said that the agricultural sector can provide the needed boost for Nigeria’s quest for economic revival, saying that his administration would continue to support the Federal Government initiative to revamp the sector.
Governor Ambode, who spoke when he visited the Nigeria Breweries Plc in Iganmu Lagos, said Agriculture, which was once the mainstay of the nation’s economy would only thrive when local production is encouraged by not just the government, but corporate organisations.
“We can actually use agriculture to revive and reflate this economy, so even before our own activation, it is very clear that this is what you have been doing in the last 20 years. We would like to partner with you and encourage you to say that whatever it is that we can do to increase employment in Nigeria, we would be ready to work with you,” the Governor said.
While commending Nigeria Breweries for its 70 years anniversary, he lauded the company for taking the initiative to engage over 250,000 farmers in its sorghum and cassava value chain, saying that it has not gone a long way in providing jobs for the people.
The Governor said, “We are very happy that you are part of the success story in Lagos. You create jobs for Lagosians, I am excited about the fact that you are employing about 250,000 farmers, 4000 direct jobs, but surely those on and off beer parlours and restaurants are part of the indirect jobs that you have created for Lagosians.
He also commended their commitment towards Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), especially in the areas of health and educational development, adding that they were one of the many corporate brands in the State leading from the front.
Governor Ambode said that his administration would work towards advancing the existing partnership and cooperation between the State Government and Nigeria Breweries, just as he pledged his commitment to create an enabling environment for businesses to thrive.
To show his unraveling commitment towards improving the ease of doing business in the State, the Governor instantly approved the request made by the Chairman of Nigeria Breweries, Chief Kola Jamodu for the rehabilitation of Abebe Village Road and also the maintenance of the street lights, assuring that work would commence within the next seven days.
Earlier, Chief Jamodu, in his welcome address, lauded Governor Ambode for his development strides since he assumed office, especially in the areas of road construction, security improvement and support for industry.
“Your Excellency, as it is often said morning shows the day, your superlative performance within the first few months of your administration has shown that we, like all Lagosians made the right choice. Our company would continue to join hands with you in the march to make Lagos the cynosure of all eyes,” Jawodu said.
Jawodu said the humble beginning of the first brewery in Lagos in 1948 has seen the company set up 10 other breweries strategically located across the country.
Highlight of the Governor’s visit was the signing of a three-year partnership agreement between the Lagos State Government and Nigeria Breweries for the annual One Lagos Fiesta aimed at making the event.
Governor Ambode and members of the State Executive Council were later conducted round the facility by Chief Jawodu, the Technical Director, Mr. Henk Wymenga and other top officials of the company.