By Dennis Udoma
UYO—Akwa Ibom State Government yesterday said 8,500 farmers in the state have benefited from the government’s support to businesses in the agro-allied sector as part of efforts to boost production and food sufficiency.
Senior Special Assistant to Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom State on Marketing and Brand Management, Mr. Sam Edoho, announced this in Uyo during Dakada Business Forum, explaining that investment in fish farming, palm fruit cultivation, palm oil processing and other ventures had been tremendous in the past two years of Governor Emmanuel’s administration.
According to him, more than 500 new entrepreneurs had been empowered with training programmes in the state under the new initiative of the Dakkada philosophy.
He said: “All these are in addition to various opportunities we have attracted to our people through firms like MTN who gave starter packs to 600 youths to start their telecommunications business, Nigerpet, Hensek and others.”
The governor’s aide said N31 million had been disbursed to cooperative societies across the 31 local government areas of the state, adding: “Let me state here that, Dakkada multipurpose cooperative society is another bold step of this administration towards empowering the people. It also reflects a deliberate strategy of adapting and localizing globally tested and trusted models of communal prosperity.”
Edoho described the Dakkada business forum as an opportunity to exchange ideas of economic importance stressing that it would become a milestone and formidable economic institution for the benefit of the people.
This he stated, was a practical demonstration of the state government’s commitment to encourage entrepreneurship, as the Directorate of Marketing and Brand Management honoured and empowered young outstanding entrepreneurs who won the 2017 Dakkada Young Entrepreneurs Award.
One of the awardees, a 200 Level undergraduate student of the Library Science, University of Uyo, Miss Blessing Emah honoured with Dakkada Entrepreneurship award got cash prize of N1.3million at the Business Forum Exhibition.
Miss Blessing got her unexpected package after telling her Dakkada story, showcasing her ingenuity in blending and packaging cocoyam and water yam into flour for the easy preparation of one of the most precious delicacy of the Ibibio/efik people, Ekpang Nkukwo.
Governor Udom Emmanuel who was represented at the event by the Commissioner for Housing and Special Duties, Mr. Akan Okon announced a donation of N1million naira after Blessing who is in her 20s impressed the forum with her initiative.
The Governor who was full of appreciation to the Directorate of Marketing and Brand Management for the tutelage and encouragement given to young entrepreneurs, who are keying into the Dakkada philosophy and urged the awardees to utilize the cash donations given to them to expand their business network.
Moved by Blessing’s presentation at the business forum, the Chief Executive Officer of Idem’s ultimate, Mr. Unyime Idem also appreciated her with N300, 000.