The West African Rice Association (WARA) has described the expansion of Labana Rice Mills agribusiness programme to some African countries as a boost not only to Nigeria’s socio-economic development but the region at large.
Mr Mahamadou Hadeve, the association’s President stated this when he led the leadership of the association on a visit to Labana Rice Mills site in Birnin
Kebbi in continuation of their visit to member-countries on Thursday.
While commending the company for what he described as a wonderful initiative, Hadeve declared that the company’s business initiative would undoubtedly fast track socioeconomic development in the West African sub-region.
He listed the member countries that formed the Executive Committee Members of the association to include; Niger, Ghana, Burkina Faso, Benin, Togo, Senegal and Nigeria.
The President said the tour specifically aimed at mobilising both rice farmers and processors in the sub-region to strengthen their relationship, promote and develop rice business transaction within the sub-region.
“However, on arrival in Nigeria and Labana Rice Mills in particular, we discovered that this company has already set the pace for achieving our mission and objectives.
“Specifically, I am happy and satisfied with the acquisition of 30,000 hectares of farm land by Labana Rice Mills in Benin Republic for rice cultivation.
“It is also noteworthy to state that acceptance of students from educational institutions in the neighbouring countries for industrial training, will certainly serve as another solid foundation for achieving the association’s set objectives,” he said.
Hadeve noted with satisfaction the cordial relationship between Rice Farmers’ Association of Nigeria (RIFAN) and the Rice Processors’ Association of Nigeria (RIPAN), which he said, had remarkably contributed to the success of rice business in Nigeria.
The visitors were accompanied by the RIFAN Deputy National President, Alhaji Ahmed Dukku alongside Kebbi State Chairman, Alhaji Sahabi Augie.
The team was received and briefed by the management staff led by the General Manager, Abdullahi Idris-Zuru.
Idris-Zuru assured the visitors that the company would fully support their initiative of uniting the rice producers and processors towards turning around the fortune of rice industry in the sub-region.
The General Manager further disclosed that the company was considering more avenues to further promote agribusiness in the neighbouring countries.