Photo: GrowAfrica

NNPC, Kebbi activate N500m cassava project for bio-ethanol production

*5,000 hectares of land acquired for project jointly financed by NNPC, Kebbi State ─Prof. Mohammad Ka’oje

*Land validation contracted to two varsities in Sokoto and Adamawa States

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

In a move to enhance the lot of Nigerian farmers, boost agricultural yields, and improve biofuel production in the country, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and Kebbi State Government have cultivated cassava on 2,675 hectares of land for production of bio-ethanol in the state.

Prof. Mohammad Ka’oje, Chairman of the Kebbi State Standing Committee on Biofuel, in a statement disclosed this Thursday, July 23, 2020, in Birnin Kebbi, Kebbi State capital.

Ka’oje said that the cultivated area is part of the 5,000 hectares acquired for the project to be jointly financed at the cost of N500 million each by both NNPC and Kebbi State Government.

He stated that “the obligation of both partners is that the state government is mandated to provide 20,000 hectares of land each for the cassava and sugarcane projects while the NNPC on the other hand is responsible for land validations.

“I wish to take this opportunity to report to you that KBSG has met all its obligations under the MoU.

“In addition, it was agreed at a joint meeting of the partners that the state government should cultivate 5,000 hectares of cassava which will also form additional equity share for the state.”

According to the Chairman of the Kebbi State Standing Committee on Biofuel, “so far, 2,675 hectares have been cultivated and fully established.

“This is for the purpose of generating seedlings and raw materials for test run of the machinery.

“The NNPC, on the other hand, is responsible for land validation, soil testing, feasibility studies, community integration, stakeholders’ Engagement and Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA).”

The land validation is contracted to Usman Danfodio University, Sokoto, and Modibbo Adama University of Technology, Yola, in Sokoto and Adamawa States, for cassava and sugarcane respectively, he stated.

Ka’oje further disclosed that Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, is also handling the agriculture component of the feasibility study.

He said: “The feasibility studies, soil testing and mapping have reached advanced stage of completion.

“The total financial implication of these to the NNPC is about N500 million.

“The Kebbi State Government has expended nearly the same amount towards meeting its own part of the obligation.”

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