Delta farmer wants to buy govt.’s cassava mill at subsidised rate
Mr Justus Kachikwu, Chairman, Nigeria Cassava Growers Association, Delta chapter, says he wants to buy the State Government’s cassava mill at Uzere, Isoko North Local Government Area of the state.
Kachikwu, in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Asaba on Sunday, appealed to the Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa-led administration to sell the multi-million naira facility to him at a subsidised rate.
According to him, it will be difficult for any farmer in the state to buy the mill and recoup his/her fund if government insists on selling the mill at its acquisition rate.
NAN recalls that the state Commissioner for Commerce and Industry, Mrs Mary Iyasere, had in November 2016, said the state government had a plan to privatice all its cassava processing mills.
“This process will come into effect before the end of the first quarter of 2017,” the commissioner said at a news conference.
Kachikwu said that he had indicated interest to acquire the mill, pointing out that the state government had accepted his first bidding.
The chairman, however, lamented that his banker had refused to finance the project.
“As at the moment, no investor can buy the mill and make profit if the price is not subsidised.
“The equipment is becoming obsolete and government wants to recover its fund while buyers want to buy it and make profit.
“We compare prices, and so far, it seems cheaper to embark on a new cassava processing mill project. My banker prefers funding new projects,” Kachikwu said.