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Adamawa Police arrest 18 youths protesting against sugar firm

By Umar Yusuf

YOLA – Tension is mounting in Numan, Adamawa State as no fewer than 18 persons have been arrested by the state Police Command for disturbances, following a protest embarked upon by the Gywana Community against Savannah Sugar Company.

Vanguard learnt that some youths from Gywana Community and other surrounding villages picketed the Savannah Sugar complex for two days running, thereby stopping production which prompted the company to call in the police.

The community, according to our findings, was said to be protesting the refusal of the management of the company to make available about 500 hectares of land for an out grower scheme, for which the Sugar Development Council had already set aside N1 billion loan for the community to access.

The Sugar Development Council is believed to have provided N200 million from its fund, and sourced another N800 million from the Agricultural Credit Guarantee Scheme of the Central Bank  (CBN), for an out-grower schemes meant for communities around the areas as part of its mandate to enhance sugar plantations and production  in the country.

The council, according to our findings, was said to have placed as a condition for accessing the loan, the availability of at least 500 hectares of land and the communities forming Cooperatives Organizations, before they could access the fund.

The Gywana community leader, Chief Bedean Dingoli, told Vanguard that the growing youth restiveness in the area followed the refusal of the management of the company to make available some portions of land to enable the communities access the loans provided for the out growers loan scheme.


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