Kogi State Government has concluded plans to establish 12 cottage industries in nine local government areas to boost the economy of rural communities, an official has disclosed.

Mr Edward Onoja, the Chief of Staff to Gov. Yahaya Bello, made the disclosure while inaugurating four community projects executed by ActionAid Nigeria on Wednesday at Ofuloko, Igalamela-Odolu council area of the state.

He said the cottage industries were expected to commence operations in January 2019, adding that the cottage industries include oil palm, cassava, grains processing and block molding.

The chief of staff said 500 kilometre rural roads would be constructed to assist farmers in evacuating their farm produce.

He said that the road project being sponsored by the World Bank in partnership with the state government would be executed under the state Rural Access Maintenance Project (RAMP).

Onoja said the state government would promptly pay its counterpart contribution for the project to ensure the immediate take-off of the road project aimed at transporting crops to processing centres and markets.

However, Onoja inaugurated two Rice and Maize milling factory, Garri processing and a hand pump borehole at Okpakpata.

He also inaugurated rice, cassava and maize milling machines at Ofuloko in Igalamela-Odolu council area which he described as “laudable interventionproject”.

ActionAid Nigeria country Director, Mrs Ene Obi, represented by Mr Ipoade Imolaju, Programme Manager, Humanitarian Resilience, said the essence of the projects was to enhance the living standard of women and youths.

Obi said there was need for the youth to be gainfully engaged to minimise radicalism and extremism.

In his remarks, Mr Zekeri Usman, Youth Leader of Okpeji/Okpakpata community said the intervention of ActionAid and PIBCID had added a “great value to the economic standard of our people.”

Mr Aminu Faruna, Youth President, Ofuloko community, commended the ActionAid for the support to eradicate poverty in the community.

The state Commissioner for Agriculture, Mr Kehinde Oloruntoba, inaugurated five similar projects supported by ActionAid Nigeria in Aku, Osara-Gada and Pears, all in Adavi Local Government Area.

Mrs Gift Owonipa, Exexutive Director, Participation Initiative for Behavioural Change in Development (PIBCID) said the nine projects in Igalamela-Odolu and Adavi local government areas gulped N36 million.

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