The Executive Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Abdulrasheed Bawa, promised to work with the National Sugar Development Council, NSDC, to ensure that the National Sugar Masterplan of Nigeria becomes a reality.
The EFCC boss gave this assurance today, 12th August, during a courtesy visit paid to him by the Executive Secretary of NSDC, Zacch Adedeji, at the Commission’s headquarters in Abuja.
TheFact Nigeria reports that the Federal Government had, in 2008, directed the NSDC to develop a road map for the attainment
of self-sufficiency in sugar within the shortest time possible. In
compliance, the Council came up with the Nigerian Sugar Master Plan, which had estimated that the country’s demand for sugar would breach the 1.7million metric tonnes (MMT) mark by 2020. To be able to satisfy this from domestic production, there is the need to establish some 28 sugar factories of varying capacities and bring about 250,000 hectares of land into sugarcane cultivation, over the next 10 years.
Adedeji, who, during the visit, presented a copy of the Nigeria Sugar Masterplan, explained that the vision behind it was to revolutionize sugar production towards achieving national sufficiency in sugar production.
The NSDC boss noted that the Sugar industry had the potential to solve unemployment and insecurity problems in Nigeria, but regretted that the country was contributing less than 5% of the sugar value chain.
“We need to achieve at least 65 % value addition to achieve the objectives of the Masterplan”, he said.
Consequently, he appealed to the EFCC to assist the Council in achieving its objectives.
“We are here today to seek for further support in achieving our aim. We want to focus on the economic part of EFCC, so our meeting here is to forge ahead that alliance that we have had, that has been working for us, to pursue such alliance to where we can achieve our sugar sufficiency”.
He added that the Council was eager to collaborate with the Commission in the area of intelligence and data gathering.
Bawa, on his part, assured the NSDC boss that the Commission would provide all the necessary support needed to achieve the mandate of the Council.
“The EFCC will cooperate with you in whatever way we can be of help to ensure that the Nigerian Sugar Masterplan becomes a reality,” he said.