NSMP Phase 2: Sugar Council boss seeks support of state governors

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The Executive Secretary, National Sugar Development Council (NSDC), Mr. Zacch Adedeji FCA has solicited the support of governors of sugar producing states in the country towards the revitalization of the sugar sub-sector, saying the guidelines for the implementation of the Phase 2 of the Nigeria Sugar Master Plan requires the inputs of critical stakeholders like state governors for it to succeed.

This is contained in a statement signed by the Head, Public Affairs Unit National Sugar Development Abdullahi W. Abdullahi, the statement reels out that, Adedeji who made the appeal, when he led a delegation from the National Sugar Development Council on a courtesy visit to the Governor of Nasarawa state and Chairman, Forum of Governors of Sugar Producing States, Engr. Sule Abdullahi in Lafia, Nasarawa state, said state governors as landlords of sugar projects in their respective domains have contributed to the modest success so far recorded in the industry.

While commending the Forum of Governors of Sugar Producing States for creating a safe and enabling environment for sugar operators to go about their business activities without hitches such as perennial disagreements over land ownership between host communities and operators, communal hostilities and other associated challenges, said the Forum has contributed to the peace enjoyed across communities hosting sugar projects across states. Recall that the Federal Government had in 2013 began the implementation of a 10-year master plan to revamp sugar sector. The policy plan code-named the Nigeria Sugar Master Plan (NSMP) has four major objectives which are for Nigeria to attain self-sufficiency in sugar production, stem the rising tide of sugar importation, create job opportunity for Nigerians and the generation of electricity and production of ethanol for industrial purposes. The first phase of the plan is expected to end in the first quarter of 2023.

Speaking on the current status of the master plan, yesterday,  Adedeji said “given the importance of the sector to Nigeria’s economy, and considerable success recorded in the last 10 years, President Muhammadu Buhari recently approved the phase 2 of the master plan which is expected to run for another 10 years beginning from 2023.” “Your Excellency, sir, we are quite pleased with the invaluable contributions of the forum you chair to the faithful implementation of the Nigeria Sugar Master Plan. We’ve made considerable progress in critical segments of the NSMP, especially as it relates to the refining component of the plan. Our next plan of action is to replicate the successes recorded in the area of sugar refining in our field and agricultural operations”.

“As you rightly know, the NSMP isn’t about sugar production alone, we count largely on its ability to take millions of our people out of poverty, develop infrastructure and improve the economic status of communities hosting sugar projects. We are quite optimistic about our projections in the sugar industry. We shall rely heavily on the use of verifiable data and modern technology in to drive the phase 2 of the master plan. The sugar sector holds tremendous opportunities for Nigeria and Nigerians in terms of job creation for our youths, increased revenue and general economic prosperity for the nation”.

On challenges encountered by BIP operators and plans put in place by the Council to address them, Mr. Adedeji said, “We have listened to them in their separate presentations during our meetings in the last one week. They outlined a number of challenges confronting them. As you know, Nigeria is part of the global system.

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