From Nsisong Morgan, Abuja
The National Cashew Association of Nigeria (NCAN), Eastern Zone, has raised the alarm over festering leadership crisis within the body, saying the development was deeply threatening government’s cashew policy.
NCAN said the issue was worrisome as the Federal Government had since designated cashew as a national crop but had not lived up to the status.
Speaking at a press briefing in Abuja yesterday, NCAN Zonal Vice President, Dr. Chuks Nkanele, the Zonal Secretary, Mr. Ogbodo Godwin, and Zonal Public Relations Officer, Mr. Wordshot Amaechi Ugwele, told journalists that efforts by the government to make the crop a major revenue earner through increased export may not be fully realised if a new leadership for the association was not in place.
They said the national executive of the association whose tenure expired in 2014 were refusing to relinquish power, even as they insisted that the zone had been marginalised by the national body in the scheme of things.
They claimed that lack of coordination in the association had left a gap which foreigners, including Vietnamese and Indians, were exploiting to buy cashew directly from farmers in villages at reduced price.
They therefore urged the government to cease from recognising the association’s executive led by Mr. Tola Faseru.
The NCAN Eastern Zone demanded “that nobody should be allowed to sabotage the economic activities of the Federal Government with regards to the contribution of cashew as an important national crop. NCAN East demands that as an important stakeholder from a zone that contributes over 70 per cent of national produce, its views must be respected.
“NCAN East seriously demands that our current constitution must be respected in terms and principles and must be enforced at all times. That in accordance with the constitution, a set of national executives must be elected at legitimately constituted Annual General Meeting (AGM) to replace the current executive led by Mr. Tola Faseru whose tenure expired in December 2014.”
The zone declared that any “meeting called or held outside the requirement of the constitution to amend the constitution and elongate the tenure of the current executive led by Mr. Faseru is illegal, null and void.
“That the Federal Government, through the Ministries of Industry, Trade and Investment, and Agriculture and Rural Development should cease forthwith to recognise the Faseru-led executive as representative of NCAN.”