Dr Emmanuel Akabe, Deputy Gov. of Nasarawa State, said 40 per cent of Nigeria’s total sugar needs would come from Nasarawa state by 2024.
Akabe said this at the closing banquet of the Association of Hospital and Administration Pharmacists of Nigeria (AHAPN) Annual National Scientific Conference in Lafia.
According to him, the 40 per cent sugar needs of the country will be produced by Dangote Sugar Refinery in Awe Local Government Area (LGA) and Flour Mills of Nigeria in Toto LGA.
He explained that once the companies started production in 2023 and started producing maximally in 2024, they would be producing 40 per cent of Nigeria’s sugar needs conveniently.
“I can tell you that by 2024, 40 per cent of the total sugar needs of Nigeria will be coming from Nasarawa state because the Dangote Sugar farm on 60, 000 hectares of land will start production by 2023.
He said that would take care of the 30 per cent of the total sugar needs of Nigeria.
“For the Flour Mills of Nigeria in Toto area, they will also produce 10 per cent of the total sugar needs.
“So 10 per cent plus 30 per cent gives us 40 per cent from Nasarawa State alone,” he said.
Akabe applauded the association for holding its annual conference in Nasarawa state.
He assured them that the state was hospitable, peaceful and yearning for investments from investors from all sectors of the economy, including the health sector.
“Nasarawa state is one of the most peaceful states in the country. Thank God for the traditional institution and others who have worked day and night to ensure we have peace and stability in our state.
“And so, we are a state in a hurry and yearning for industrialisation. Please come and invest in Nasarawa State.
He said the state had many incentives to offer since it needed the investments as the only way to grow and compete.
Earlier, Mr Olabode Ogunjemiyo, National Chairman, AHAPN, appreciated the government for providing a conducive environment for investment and bodies like AHAPN to be able to hold its annual conference in the state.
He said inin spite of initial concerns about security, the weeklong conference took place peacefully with many invited dignataries and about 1,000 pharmacists from across the country in attendance.
Mr Luka Augustine, Chairman of AHAPN in Nasarawa state, later told newsmen that the chapter was grateful to its national body for having faith and giving the chapter the opportunity to host the conference in spite of insecurity concerns.
He said one of the highlights of the weeklong conference was the launching of the state chapter’s Health Systems Pharmacy Magazine aimed at educating readers and showcasing the efforts of pharmacists in the state with regards to their research and work.
“It’s a scientific magazine showcasing clinical trials of colleagues. So we decided to use this opportunity at this conference to showcase what we are doing to the world,” he said.
Also, Mr Nwaora Okpalaeke, Chairman, Local Organising Committee, said the conference was the best organised in the last 15 years.
He appreciated Gov. Abdullahi Sule, Emir of Lafia, Justice Sidi Bage (Rtd) and other well meaning Nigerians for their support and contribution to the success of the conference.
“I am sure in the next 10 years, we might not have any conference as interesting as this so I thank God for everything,” he said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that AHAPN’s 23rd Annual National Conference held in Lafia from Aug. 1 to 5, with the theme: “COVID-19 Experience: Expanding the role of health system pharmacists.”
Pharmacists from Federal Medical Centres Keffi and Owerri, National Hospital Abuja and University College Hospital (UCH) Ibadan among many other health institutions across the country, were in attendance.