Charitable organisation, British American Tobacco Nigeria Foundation (BATNF) has launched a N700 million plan to tackle youth unemployment through agriculture.
This was revealed by the foundation’s Executive Director, Abimbola Okoya during the unveiling of the programme.
BATNF reportedly achieved this initiative through its Wealth is Here Campaign which will last till 2022.
What the initiative entails: Okoya said the programme would involve providing youths with guidance and training in value-adding and food processing practices in agriculture. The strategy that would be employed by BATNF according to Okoya would guarantee food security and inclusive growth by involving more women and youth and promoting improved resilience to climate variability and shocks.
Okoya stated that Nigeria has the potential to become the food basket but to achieve this, efforts must be channelled towards harnessing knowledge and skills to realise the potential which is what BATNF hopes to achieve through this initiative.
Also present at the programme was the Managing Director of BAT Nigeria, Yorub Al-Bahrani who said the initiative was brought up as a result of the fact that the country is rich in agriculture and could impacts youth positively in terms of job creation. In the second quarter of this year, he said the sector contributed 21.9% to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and was ranked third highest of a non-oil sector.
BATNF Foundation: The foundation, which was established in 2002, has an investment of over N1.6 billion in sustainable agriculture which has reached over 36,000 farmers.
The Foundation, which commenced field operations in June 2003, has a vision of improving the quality of life of citizens in rural and urban areas of Nigeria. It operates throughout Nigeria on a series of local initiatives with a focus on empowerment through sustainable poverty alleviation, agricultural development, potable water, environmental protection and vocational skills acquisition.
Lagos commences enforcement against building collapse, substandard materials
The state government has moved to actualize its vision of zero tolerance for building collapse.
The Lagos State government said that it has commenced aggressive enforcement against quackery in construction to end building collapse in the state as it called for the support of building professionals.
This is as the state government has moved to actualize its vision of zero tolerance for building collapse.
This disclosure was made by the General Manager of Lagos State Materials Testing Laboratory (LSMTL), Mr Olufunsho Elulade, at its inaugural stakeholders’ conference with the theme, ‘Construction, Material Quality Control and Assurance in Lagos State, on Tuesday in Lagos.
According to a report from the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Elulade identified the use of substandard building materials and lack of adherence to quality assurance standards as the major causes of building collapse in the state.
He said the agency will immediately start standard enforcement in the building construction value chain to ensure the use of the right materials.
Elulade said, “We are, hereby, using this medium to state the terms of operations with all our stakeholders across the state; we want to partner with you to move the state forward in order to have safer Lagos for the benefit of all.’’
He emphasized the importance of doing away with the menace of quackery, substandard materials and corruption in the construction sector.
The LSMTL boss outlined the various services offered by its laboratory which includes soil tests, water quality assessment, calibration, destructive and non-destructive tests, among others.
While launching the new logo of the agency, Elulade, pointed out that it was a strategy to eliminate quacks and private laboratories using the agency’s old logo to impersonate its operations and mislead the public.
Also, the Public Relations Officer, Nigerian Institute of Builders (NIOB), Lagos Branch, Mr Olusesanayo Philip said the institute would sustain its public sensitisation campaign adding that the institute was also partnering with LSMTL to sensitise the public on the need to engage professional builders to tame the monster of building collapse in Nigeria.
What this means
The enforcement against quackery and the use of substandard materials in the construction value chain by the Lagos State government will come as a huge relief to residents and a boost to its fight against building collapse.
There have been numerous building collapse incidents in various parts of the state with attendant human casualties, due to the use of substandard materials or non-compliance with the state’s building planning laws and standards.
Burger King to open first outlet in Nigeria by Q4 2021
Burger King is expected to employ about 6,000 people (direct and indirect) in Nigeria between 2021 and 2026.
Burger King, an American multinational hamburger fast food chain, is expected to start its operations in Nigeria by the fourth quarter (Q4) of 2021.
The company is also expected to employ about 6,000 people (direct and indirect) in the country between 2021 and 2026, other things being equal.
These were disclosed by Antoine Zammarieh, the Franchisee of Burger King in Nigeria and Managing Director, Allied Food & Confectionary Services Limited, in an interview with Nairametrics on Tuesday.
He said, “Burger King will start operations by Autumn, i.e between September and November 2021. We have set up the Quality Control unit and have met some of our local suppliers to seal the deal. Also, we have sent some of the ingredients to America to test quality.
As a company, we are delighted to enter this new market being the largest country in Africa and are looking forward to serving our future guests with our world-famous Burger King meals.
Most importantly, our goal is to positively contribute to the economy by creating more jobs and employment opportunities. In five years, we hope to directly or indirectly employ between 5,000 and 6,000 people in Nigeria.”
Zammarieh added that the hamburger maker, in a show of interest in the Nigerian market, had signed a development agreement for the Nigerian market.
He explained that the development agreement of the chain in Nigeria, which was recently signed, would give more confidence to the Nigerian market and consumers in general, especially during these hard times.
What you should know
Nairametrics had reported, three weeks back, when Zammarieh said, “I always believed in Nigeria and in its people. I am confident this venture will go a long way and prove successful for Burger King, Nigeria, and our company.”
“I believe this will be a tremendous step towards giving more confidence to the Nigerian market and consumers in general.”
What to expect
The first outlet of the hamburger chain in Nigeria is expected to be launched in Lagos.
The Florida-based restaurant chain is set to join the likes of Dominos Pizza, Krispy Kreme, KFC, and Chicken Republic (pieXpress) in a stiff competition for market share and dominance in a saturated market, with hundreds of other traditional restaurant chains.
Burger King is expected to dig deep into its quiver of strategies to ensure an impressive performance and success in its first year of operation, as other players have been having it tough following their respective launches into the Nigerian market.
The COVID-19 pandemic however has affected the fast-food industry severely, as the disruption to the industry’s supply chain, especially the on-trade channel, which accounts for a significant percentage of restaurant sales, triggered declines in their profits in 2020.
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