From Mustapha Adamu, Kano
Gezawa Commodity Market and Exchange Limited (GCMX) will open in the first quarter (Q1) of 2021, according to the founder of the market, Ahmad Idris, the Accountant General of the Federation (AGF).
The AGF stated this when he received a delegation of Kano Concerned Citizens Initiative (KCCI), led by its Chairman, Alhaji Bashir Tofa who paid a visit to bless the market on Saturday.
Addressing the delegation, Idris said he nurtured the idea of the market about five years ago with a bid to develop agricultural enterprises and other businesses in Kano and the nation in general.
He narrated that when he engaged consultants to conduct a research in some major food markets across Kano, Jigawa and other states, the outcome of the investigation revealed that most of the farmers in the region do not benefit from the output they produce.
According to him, “our research revealed that majority of our farmers are not the determinants and actors of the major food markets. They have been reduced to small market traders not major actors.
“ Our youth have been left out in our food markets. Most of the major actors of these markets are foreigners. We said this is not going to continue. We have to rise up to change this trend,” he said.
The AGF disclosed that majority of investors in the commodity and exchange market are from southern Nigeria, calling on the northern people to come and invest en masse in order to reduce the soaring poverty bidevilling the region.
He explained that the project is at the phase one stage of about 5 hectares, adding that it had reached 95 percent Infrastructural completion.
In his remarks, Bashir Tofa expressed delight with the initiative, describing it as a pride of all northern region, not the founder alone.
Tofa called on the people in the North to key in into the investment as they stand to benefit a lot from the multi-billion naira business franchise.
He advised the founder to establish agricultural school for farmers within the market building, noting that “that will further enhance agricultural education and make them acquinted with modern farming.”
The 250 hectares market, first of its kind in Nigeria, is a business hub for farmers, commodity traders, manufacturers, commodity exchange, haulage service providers and all stakeholders in agro and exports value chain.
Located in Gezawa Local Government area, 24 kilometers away from Kano city, is the largest commercial one-stop hub, adding that it is a strategy to actualize the goals of self-reliance, diversification and economic development of the country.