BY PETER DURU
MAKURDI – Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom has directed a 50 percent slash in the fee for the acquisition of Certificate of Occupancy (C of O) to enable Benue indigenes acquire the document and use it to access loans for the purpose of doing business.
Governor Ortom who stated this today in a radio interactive programme monitored in Makurdi said people with landed property and in need of C of O should be encouraged to acquire same to access loans for investment purposes.
While urging Benue people to explore investment opportunities which abound in the state, the Governor said “the decision would be formalized at the next State Executive Council meeting.”
Speaking on his industrialization drive of his administration, Governor Ortom said “in spite of the current financial challenges, the state is currently collaborating with local and foreign investors to either concession or revive the moribund industries.”
He called on Benue indigenes with the financial wherewithal to come up and take over the affected industries and manage, saying “government is willing to concession them or sell to deserving persons at affordable rates to stimulate the economy.”
The Governor noted that welfare of staff remained his priority, assuring that with the declaration of state of emergency on payment of salaries, all avenues would be explored to clear arrears of workers’ salaries, pensions and gratuities.
On agriculture, Governor Ortom further encouraged Benue farmers to widen their horizon to include Water Melon, Cucumber and Carrot farming, saying such crops were capable of generating high income for farmers.
He also encouraged Benue farmers to embrace dry season farming, saying “massive clearing of land, timely provision of fertilizer at highly subsidized rates and a secured environment for farmers would be guaranteed for Benue people.”
Governor Ortom while appreciating the support and understanding of Benue people to his administration, promised to redouble his efforts towards developing the state that all would be happy to live in, adding that he would work at jet speed in the remaining part of his first tenure.