The Ekiti State Government plans to establish an international market for plantain/banana at Ilawe-Ekiti, in Ekiti South West Local Government Area of the state.
Gov Segun Oni, who made this known on Monday at Ilawe-Ekiti, said the project was aimed at boosting the revenue base of the area.
Oni spoke during the handing_over ceremony of a Toyota bus to St. Peters, Christ Apostolic Church, Oke_Isegun, Ilawe_Ekiti, and a Toyota Corolla car to Mr.Dayo Olugbade, the youth leader of the community.
The vehicles were donated by a philanthropist, Mr. Sina Awelewa, who also awarded a N60,000 scholarship to Mr. Gbenga Arisoyin, a law student from the community.
Presenting the keys to the beneficiaries, Oni said government would assist plantain/banana farmers in the community to secure funding from the Bank of Industry.
He said the plantain market would be modeled after the Brazil Plantain International Market, noting that plantain/banana farming was the mainstay of the community.
Oni said:â€œRecently, your representative at the State House of Assembly, Mr. Edward Asaolu, and I visited Brazil as part of the government economic development plan.
â€œDuring the visit, it was concluded that the state government would establish a plantain international market at Ilawe_Ekiti which is noted for abundant plantain/banana farming.â€œThe market will be a model of the Brazil Plantain International Market.
â€œThe motive is to boost the revenue of the farmers and to encourage them to boost theÂ plantain/banana farming which they are noted for.â€
The governor appealed to the indigenes to engage in large_scale plantain/banana farming, while assuring them of government assistance at all times.
As part of efforts at making the community a hub of commercial activities, Oni said government would construct a dual carriage road from Ado_Ekiti to the community.
On workersâ€™ welfare, OniÂ said the government had commenced the process that would ensure that the workers received their salaries before the 25th day of every month.
In an interview with NAN, Awelewa said his gesture was not for political reasons, but aimed at the development of evangelism and helping the needy in the society.
â€œThe motive of these donations and scholarship is not political but aimed at contributing towards religious propagation and to help indigent people in the society.
â€œIt is intended to ensure the effectiveness of youth programmes in Ilawe_Ekiti community,â€ he said.
Awelewa asked indigenes of the community in government and other well_to_do individuals to always remember the masses.He also urged churches to always preach against violence, while the youth should refrain form vices.