By Nosa Obaze,
Chairman and members of the newly reconstituted Board of the Nigerian Institute for Oil Palm Research (NIFOR) have been charged to come up with development plan that would help revive NIFOR and make it regain its lost glories.
The charge was given by the Omo N’Oba N’Edo Uku Akpolokpolo, Ewuare II, Oba of Benin when the Chairman of the Board, Emperor Chris Ibe led other members of the Board to pay the Oba of Benin a courtesy visit in the Palace.
The monarch said the dwindling state of NIFOR has been a source of concern to stakeholders and expressed confidence that the newly reconstituted Board would be able to revive the institute for good, considering the caliber and pedigree of the Chairman and members of the Board.
Ewuare II urged the Board to consider local content in employment into NIFOR, especially to provide job for some of the Libya returnees.
The Benin Monarch emphasized the need for the Board to reach out to other international organizations like the one in Brazil, assuring that the Palace will help facilitate the development of NIFOR to an enviable status.
Addressing the Omo N’Oba, the Chairman of the newly reconstituted Board of NIFOR, Emperor Chris Ibe said NIFOR is key to Nigeria economy as it has the capacity to become the highest income earner for the country after crude oil.
He lamented that NIFOR was neglected over the years, pointing out that the new Board would bring private sector ideas to rejuvenate NIFOR, and called on all stakeholders in oil palm to be part of the drive.
Emperor Ibe said with the support of His Royal Majesty and Mr. President, NIFOR would be turned around to create job and wealth for Edo people and Nigerians.
The Chairman of NIFOR Board said they look forward to making NIFOR a tourist center, farm settlement and recreational center, but wished that government would create the enabling environment for them to perform.
The Oba of Benin also received the Comptroller of Immigration, Edo State Command, Mr. Kayode Eniolorunda with a charge to work with other security agencies to produce geographical information about the various cattle herdsmen camps in forest in Edo State.
His Royal Majesty said there was need for them to fish out foreigners among the herders, as well as suggest better ways to police the porous borders in Nigeria.
The new Comptroller of Immigration, Edo State Command, Mr. Kayode Eniolorunda said his command would focus on three areas including passport administration, local government monitoring and immigration.
He solicited for the support of the Local Government Chairmen and State Governor in the discharge of their duties.
Mr. Eniolorunda acknowledged the effort of His Royal Majesty to tackle illegal migration and human trafficking as well as the policies and pronouncement of State Government, especially the setting up of committee and task force against human trafficking in the state.