The Presidential Amnesty Programme is partnering the National Board for Technology Incubation (NBTI) to improve the quality and certification of agricultural products.
The products to be improved are those grown by Amnesty beneficiaries trained and empowered in the agric and allied sector.
Towards this end, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Office of the Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta and Coordinator, Amnesty Programme, and the NBTI will be signed tomorrow in Abuja.
This is sequel to an approval granted the Presidential Amnesty Programme by the Director-General of the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, to use 23 technology incubation centres allocated to it by the NBTI for cluster manufacturing.
The centres will be used by Amnesty beneficiaries trained and empowered in the agricultural sector to produce their products to obtain NAFDAC registration numbers to enhance quality and acceptability of products in the market.
Amnesty beneficiaries trained in rice, garri, plantain-flour, plantain-chips, chin-chin, smoked fish, chicken, snail, fruit juice and cosmetics production, among others, will benefit from the partnership.
The 23 NBTI technology incubation centres approved for the incubation are in Edo, Abia, Imo, Ondo, Rivers, Cross Rivers, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa and Delta States.
Apart from the MoU with the NBTI, the Amnesty Programme Small Business Support Desk, an initiative of the Coordinator of the Programme, Prof. Charles Dokubo, is to ensure that all graduates of Amnesty Programme vocational training centres trained on production of NAFDAC regulated products are registered for safety, efficacy, distribution and sale of their products.
The Small Business Support Desk, headed by a Deputy Director, Mrs. Edotimi Olive, is to foster greater understanding of NAFDAC registration procedures, and also serve as a point of enquiry for clients on regulatory issues and assist in conducting Good Manufacturing Practice Inspection of Factories (GMPIF) to ensure that products are produced in accordance with international standards.
Prof. Dokubo assured of his readiness to partner on technology incubation, especially in food production, when the management of the NBTI, led by the Director-General, Dr Mohammed Jubrin, visited his office.
He said: “There is a necessity for us to work together to ensure we get those certifications that will enable people consume what we produce without getting to harm. I think there is a need for synergy between us because we do farming. If we go through the documents and understand everything, we will sit to have an MoU so that we can work directly with you…”
Then, we will know all that it takes to set up other centres in the Niger Delta as most of the things we do will equally go to those centres to be accessed and evaluated to know if they are edible.”
Dr. Jubrin also promised to quickly articulate a proposal for an MoU between the two agencies that will lead to quality food processing, production and manufacturing businesses.