Blog, Resources

Nigeria produces 57% of the world’s shea nut.

The Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, Hajiah Aisha Abubakar recently revealed that Nigeria accounts for about 57 percent of the world Shea nut production. She also stated that the market for chocolate value is approximately 117 billion dollars while that of the cosmetics industry stands at 382 billion dollars. Both make use of shea butter. Nigeria stands to benefit immensely from the Shea Industry if the informal sector was properly harnessed. This is an untapped goldmine and quite a large number of unemployed people are oblivious to that. Hajiah Aisha Abubakar also announced that Nigeria will host the next International Shea Conference stating that “the International Conference is a forum which enables participants to learn best practices, build a new partnership, launch projects and promote organisational settings and also open new markets for the industry’s products globally. It is also intended to reduce Trade Barriers and also achieve sustainability. With the current administration’s focus on Agriculture, Nigeria stands to benefit immensely from the Shea Industry through the employment generation(women and youths), poverty eradication, wealth creation, environmental sustainability and attract foreign exchange earnings across the value chain”   The 11th Annual International Shea  Conference tagged ‘Shea 2018 is organised by the Federal Ministry of Industry, trade and Investment in collaboration with Federation Ministry of Agriculture, Global Shea Alliance(GSL) and National Shea Products Association(NASPAN). Themed ‘Going Further Together’, the meeting is scheduled to hold in Abuja Nigeria from 12th-14th March 2018. Yours truly has done a little research to provide interested people with some links to start exploration. Ojoba collective a Netherlands based firm supplying botanicals from Africa to Europe. A comprehensive guide to exporting shea butter to Europe for cosmetics can also be found in this report by the Centre for the Promotion of Imports from developing countries CBI. And the process of making shea butter can be found in this article by Safarijunkie As usual, you can thank me later when you hit the billions. Goodluck!  

Blog, Essays

Presidential absence, ministerial insolence and sundry insensitivity by The Guardian

When I read that the Zamfara state governor Abdul-aziz Yari Abubakar was still in Abuja unaware of the massacre in his state days after a few media outlets reported it I was livid and decided to pen a piece on such insensitivity and aloofness among our leaders especially President Muhammadu Buhari who has disappointed a majority of Nigerians with his actions or should I say inactions in Benue but in this editorial which was published by The Guardian thoroughly dissected the issue.. Read on ————————————————————————————————————————————   It is still unacceptable that what people feared most about the presidency and its attitude to the herdsmen’s killings in Benue State was actually what happened in the end with President Muhammadu Buhari visiting a neighbouring state, Nasarawa to commission insignificant projects, but failing to visit Benue State. This is a tragic flaw, a character trait, which ultimately leads to a tragic action that produces the tragic hero. It is getting curiouser and curiouser why a president who was elected on an unparallel wave of goodwill would court this fate. It was remarkable that President Muhammadu Buhari had vowed that his administration would not tolerate the attacks by herdsmen and other bandits, developments that have overshadowed other governance issues in the country in recent months. He assured the people of the north-central zone and indeed all Nigerians that the Federal Government was working day and night to ensure peace and stability returned to the flashpoints in the country. Even when he disclosed in Lafia that the government had deployed additional resources to all affected areas to maintain law and order, most people watching on television believed that the Nigerian leader should have flown to Makurdi first to commiserate with the grieving people of Benue who had earlier lost more than 73 of their kinsmen to herdsmen’s murderous acts. But sadly, he did not show up there. This is grossly insensitive. And so, all the grandiloquent speeches in Lafia without visiting Benue’s bloodspots amount to a tale told by an uncaring president. The nation is though not unaware of the fact that the commander-in-chief had directed the security agencies to arrest and prosecute any and all persons found with illegal arms. But again, this is belated. It is only coming on the heels of a groundswell of opinion that the president’s silence has been disturbing to the nation. What is more, a lot of damage had been done before the president’s directive. Besides, impunity had been perceived and insinuations of official complicity had been allowed to go on. All these came just as people were still smarting from the embarrassing visit of Benue leaders to the State House, Abuja where the President urged the Benue people to accept the spirit of the Fulani herdsmen’s atrocities in good faith and accommodate them as fellow Nigerians, a President who should have been the visitor to the grieving people in Benue. Empathy or compassion is what leaders show all over the world. They visit accident scenes and flashpoints to sympathise with the people in shows of compassion and real leadership. This government should know that this is a digital media age when information and responses to issues occur at a speed faster than that of light. So, no leader goes to bed without resolving issues that have hit the roof. Governments all over the world respond to governance and security issues instantaneously. There is no more room for executive or legislative or judicial procrastination. Things go viral immediately. So, apologies, explanations, rationalisation, visits and all critical actions of authorities should be done when they will make desired impact. Definitely, the belated actions from the office of the president on the massacre in Benue State have remarkably reduced the rating of the president and have not ministered grace to the citizens in any way. It is not for any trite reason that the constitution underscores a classical reason governments all over the world exist: “welfare and security of citizens,” which it says “shall be the primary purpose of government.” It will continue to boggle the mind, therefore, that President Buhari at such a perilous time as this could not find a purpose to visit Benue and other areas including Taraba and Adamawa where herdsmen have been wreaking havoc on farms and killing people. Sadly, this appearance of insensitivity has been complicated by ministerial insolence and even wickedness. A curious remark of the Minister of Defence, Brigadier General Mansur Dan-Alli (rtd), stoked the embers of fire the other day when he claimed that the enactment of the anti-grazing laws by some states was the immediate cause of violence by herders is quite unfortunate. This insensitive statement is one that should have been withdrawn immediately in the interest of peace and stability in the land. This is one more careless statement from the president’s key men on the bloody clashes between herdsmen and farmers in many parts of the country. The Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris Kpotum on his own always sets the tone for poor judgment and carelessness when it comes to managing crisis communication. This is also unfortunate. But the point must be quickly made that the buck of all the carelessness stops at the president’s table. He should be ready to bear the brunt of all kinds of incompetence and mediocrity in crisis management. The Defence Minister, who curiously blamed the law instead of the law breakers who are still at large over the killings should be publicly rebuked for his indiscretion that is capable of inflaming passions across flashpoints in the country. The president will continue to receive blames over choices of the men and women who have been working with him to shape politics and policies. Clearly, there have been daily indications that there are far too many of them who cannot learn, unlearn and relearn. With due respect to him, the appointor, the Defence Minister lacks the depth, tact and grit expected of a Brigadier-General from the Nigerian Army that has produced numerous fine officers.

Blog, News

Nigeria great? Not yet sir!

So Nigeria’s Minister of Power, Works and Housing Babatunde Fashola believes that Nigeria is a great country? I don’t agree with him. Nigeria is not great, at least not yet..not until we have stable power supply.

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