Mimiko says chocolate factory will add value for cocoa farmers
The Ondo State Governor, Dr Olusegun Mimiko, has given reasons for his administration’s resolve to establish a chocolate factory in the state, even as he declared that the dream of making the project a reality has come true.
Mimiko made the declaration while inspecting the ongoing Chocolate Factory project at Alade, in Idanre Local Government Area last week, explaining that government embarked on the project because of the state’s comparative advantage in cocoa production.
The governor’s team also inspected the Atosin Golf Course also in Idanre, and the ongoing Magistrate Courts at Oke-Eda in Akure.
Speaking with newsmen after the inspection, Mimiko said government was on course in establishing the chocolate factory as part of his administration’s cocoa revolution programme for more socio-economic development.
He noted that through the factory, cocoa farmers will be able to reap all benefits of cocoa production, as it will produce premium chocolate not only for the Nigerian market but across the globe as well as provide jobs for the youths.
Speaking on the ongoing construction of Magistrate Courts in Akure, the governor explained further that when completed, the facilities would uplift the status of judiciary as well as enhance quick dispensation of justice in the state.
He commended the State Chief Judge, Justice Olasehinde Kumuyi, for his vision and assured of successful completion of the project.
Recall that the State Commissioner for Information, Kayode Akinmade, alongside the Chairman Ondo Cocoa Revolution Project, Dr Jibayo Oyebade, had informed newsmen at a media parley that as part of its Cocoa Revolution drive, the government had identified the Cocoa Catalytic factory at Idanre suitable for chocolate factory, maintaining that it will soon become operational.
“By the grace of God, there will be functional chocolate factory in Ondo state soon. The factory will utilise and process Cocoa bean produced in the state and our technical partner is an internationally recognised chocolatier who is an expert in the field,” Akinmade had mentioned.
On his part, the Chairman of the Revolution project, a veterinary doctor, Dr Oyebade, explained that chocolates are of immense health value for both the young and old.
He said some people took chocolate made from the cocoa beans to Switzerland for testing, and later wrote back that it was one of the world’s best.
“Having gone through the ailments chocolate can cure or ameliorate, I have personally identified over 51 of such ailments that are peculiar or common to Africa and Africans.
“And since our partner uses natural sugar sourced from fruits and sugarcane, and not synthetic sugar , you dont have to worry about ailments that normally come from sugar. Also, Mr Governor has said that before he leaves office, school children in the state must start to take chocolate, even if it is only one tablet per week and once they begin to take that, their immune system and cognitive development will start to change. Their academic performance will improve dramatically. If the Governor starts that, it will be introduced to the elderly,” Oyebade stressed.