NALDA Partners with University of Health Sciences in Bauchi state
By Ene Okwanihe, Abuja
The National Agricultural Land Development Authority (NALDA), is set to provide support inform of Land clearing, Land Preparation and technical assistance to the University of Health Sciences and Food Nutrition in Azare Local Government Area of Bauchi state North East Nigeria.
The Vice Chancellor of the University Professor Bala Mohammed Audu while giving the NALDA team a tour of the land said, the intention is for the University to go into agro production and processing that are nutritionally fortified for both local consumption and export in the long.
The University is providing183 hectares of its available lands for cultivation for commercial purposes.
Professor Audu said, the University will use 83 hectares of Land around the school for the cultivation of the needed raw materials for processing.
“We intend to use the partnership with NALDA for cultivation of some of the raw materials that would be used for processing so that we are able to export not just the raw materials as they are but it would have added values.”
He said, the department of nutrition and dietetics of the institution are working on researches on different products and how to improve on the nutritional values of the intended products.
According to him, the school is partnering NALDA because it has the Technical know and funding capabilities.
“We want to partner with NALDA because NALDA has the know how, technology and funding to be able to add value to the land so that our produce could meet international standards that would be acceptable, NALDA is here to partner with us to meet these standards.”
Professor Audu listed some of the produce for cultivation as Hibiscus, sesame seeds, Soya beans, Locust Beans and Cassava being that the area is a cassava producing area.
On his part The Executive Secretary of NALDA Prince Paul Ikonne said the move by the instituton to partner with NALDA is a step in the right direction.
According go him, the agency had written to the Minister of Education for partnership with Universities across the country to make their lands available because they have vast acres of land that are not being put to use but can be used for agricultural development.
He said the partnership with the University of Health Sciences and Food Nutrition in Azare is a follow-up to that letter.
Ikonne disclosed that Mr. President has ensured that NALDA get all necessary funding supports, it’s only in order to deploy equipments to the institution and other places that they are needed.
Prince Ikonne added, that when other institutions in the country see the outcome and gains from the partnership with University of Health Sciences and Food Nutrition in Azare they will also leverage on the opportunity to utilise and put to use their vast lands for their benefits and that of the country at large.