Akwa Ibom Coconut Day: Gov Emmanuel flags off planting of 300, 000 seedlings
Akwa Ibom State Governor, Mr Udom Emmanuel has on Tuesday flagged off the planting of 300,000 coconut seedlings accross the state.
The act, according to the governor was aimed at boosting the supply of raw materials for the State owned Coconut Oil factory.
It could be recalled that the governor had announced decision to plant two million coconut seedlings before the exit of his tenure saying that he may achieve the target by December.
At the event to mark the state’s 2022 Coconut Day Celebration at Mkpu, Itu Mbonuso in Ini Local Government Area, the Governor described the coconut planting exercise as the hallmark of activities held to commemorate the 35th anniversary of the state.
He expressed optimism that the State will become an economic hub with the availability of raw materials to boost production at St Gabriel’s Coconut Oil Factory in the state.
“In all the activities to mark the 35th State Anniversary, this is one of the most remarkable, today we want to commission the first phase in this Local Government.
“Based on the survey that we have done, Ini will give us a very high yield with hybrid coconut.
“Our target before I handover the baton to the incoming governor is to plant two million coconut seedlings and before December we will meet that target”, he assured.
Governor Emmanuel called on the community to protect the project, explaining that the coconut plantation will generate income to the state as virgin coconut oil sells higher than crude oil at the international market.
Earlier in her remark, the Commissioner for Agriculture Dr. Mrs. Offiong Offor thanked Governor Emmanuel for facilitating the project which she noted has been a task in increasing raw materials for the coconut oil factory.
Dr. Offor said as the state marks coconut day with the planting of seedlings, many job opportunities will be created for the youths and income will be generated through the production of the coconut oil.
In a goodwill message, former Commissioner for Agriculture in the state, Dr. Glory Edet lauded the innovations in agricultural sector by Governor Udom Emmanuel, adding that the vision to plant coconut will encourage the availability of raw materials to further boost the Coconut Factory production.
Paramount Ruler of the area, HRM Edidem Etim Umoette, commended Governor Emmanuel for the various developmental projects put in place across the state.
The royal father noted that the huge investments in agriculture remains a panacea for food sufficiency.
Highpoint of the event was the planting of coconut seedlings by government functionaries to mark the day.