From Rose Ejembi, Makurdi
Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom has stressed the need for more private investors within and outside the country to come and explore the investment opportunities in the state.
The governor stated this on Monday while on a working visit to Pure Biotech Company, a private company that is into the production of Ethanol.
Governor Ortom, who noted that the importance of industries to the economic development of the state and Nigeria, said more industries in the state would mean more job opportunities for the teeming youths of the state.
According to him, if more young people are gainfully employed, it would in turn reduce the level of insecurity occasioned by restiveness and also create wealth along the value chain.
Governor Ortom who dismissed insinuations that he owned the company, said he only got to hear about the project through a friend who travelled along the route a week ago and heard people discussing the matter.
While accepting the apologies of the company which did not follow laid down government procedures to acquire and develop the land, the governor urged the management of Pure Biotech to immediately erect a signpost to educate the people about their activities.
The governor also charged the host community to provide security for the facility, even as he directed security agencies to provide surveillance and patrols to encourage more investors to the state.
Earlier, a representative of the company, Mr Stephen Numbeve, apologised on behalf of the Chinese company explaining that Pure Biotech Company Limited is into Ethanol production.
Numbeve said the company, when fully operational, would be needing 500 and 300 metric tonnes of fresh and dried cassava respectively daily as raw materials, adding that the industry would lift 2,500 persons off the street through employment.
Numbeve, who posited that the company acquired 25.4 hectares of land for the development of facilities at the company, revealed that construction Work on the site commenced in January 2021.
He promised that the company would retrace its steps and fulfil necessary conditions as law-abiding citizens.