From Femi Oyelola, Kaduna
Two research bodies in Nigeria, the Raw Materials Research and Development Council (RMRDC) and the National Research Institute for Chemical Technology (NARICT), Zaria have partnered to fabricate a fertilizer blending plant using extracts from Moringa oleifera plants.
Director General of NARICT, Prof. Idris Mohammed Bugaje, who was the Special Guest of Honour during the RMRDC Special Day at the 35th Kaduna International Trade Fair, said the prevailing tropical climate, savannah vegetation as well as the topography of Kaduna state had made the state richly endowed with abundant mineral and agricultural raw materials capable of changing the industrial climate of not only the state but the nation at large.
According to him, “RMRDC has never left anyone in doubt over its commitment to the diversification of the economy of Kaduna state in particular and the country in general. This has been well demonstrated by Council’s intervention in establishing some investment projects and provision of improved seedlings. It is also noteworthy that RMRDC has
partnered with NARICT to fabricate a fertilizer blending plant using extracts from Moringa oleifera plants.”
In his remarks on the occasion, Director-General of the RMRDC, Dr. Hussaini Doko Ibrahim said the establishment of the Council in 1988 had its background in the prevailing situation in the industrial sector of the economy from the early 1980s,namely over-reliance on imported raw materials and spare parts, a highly dependent economy on
imported goods and services including food, a mono economy with petroleum oil accounting for over 90% of our income, etc.
“This situation became worrisome thereby necessitating the clarion call by the private sector for government intervention.
“Consequently, series of meetings and consultations spearheaded by the organized private sector led to the formulation of a policy for the establishment RMRDC by the Federal Government and the Council was mandated to promote support and expedite industrial development and self-reliance through optimal utilization of local raw materials as
input to the nation’s industries,” he said.
He said the Council’s participation in trade fairs and exhibitions was one of the platforms they had used to create awareness on raw materials availability, investment opportunities and to provide relevant information geared towards the realization of private
investment in resource based industries.
According to him, the Council had over the years been working with the Kaduna state Government in carrying out her mandate and to assist in the economic development of the state through partnering with the private sector to establish resource based industries like the castor oil, fruit juice, etc., boosting of agricultural raw materials through
distribution of improved varieties of seeds to farmers associations, among others.
He said though industrialization and development called for a focused promotion of investments in the key sectors of the economy, the harnessing and development of the available local raw material which were in abundant in Kaduna state are very crucial in that process.
Kaduna state with its array of raw materials has the potentials to contribute substantially to the industrial development of the country,” he said.