Stakeholders in the Cassava value chain in Nigeria have been admonished to take optimum advantage of the various initiatives being promoted under the auspices of the African Union Commission (AUC), the Pan African Quality Infrastructure (PAQI) and the African Organisation for Standardisation (ARSO) given the vantage position of the country in the production of Cassava within the Continent.
Chairman of the National Quality Council (NQC), Osita Aboloma gave the admonition while inaugurating the Local Organising Committee (LOC) for the hosting of the African Cassava Conference scheduled for Abuja, Nigeria between October 18 and 20, 2023 with the theme “Stimulating Africa’s Industrialization Through
Development of and Assuring Quality Along The Cassava Value Chain”.
Aboloma posited that the African Continent stands to benefit immensely from initiatives such as the Cassava Value Chain project to promote intra-African Trade, enhance economic emancipation, welfare of Africans and position the Continent better in its trading relationship with the rest of the world.
Conversely, according to him, Nigeria is in an advantageous position to enhance its export potentials in cassava products to earn valuable foreign exchange, in view of the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement (AfCFTA).
He commended the efforts of the African Union Leadership, through the AUC and particularly the PAQI in promoting quality infrastructure in the continent, stressing that Nigeria through the NQC is following suite.
The NQC Chairman charged the LOC members to ensure the full cooperation of their various organizations and institutions as well as the effective mobilization of Nigeria’s public and private sector stakeholders to provide all necessary support for the success of the Conference.
Aboloma assured the Committee members that the National Quality Council will do all within its means to ensure the successful hosting of the Africa Cassava Conference as well as continue to collaborate with the Africa Union Commission through the PAQI and other Stakeholders and Development Partners in Nigeria and the entire African Continent on all initiatives relating to the promotion of Quality within and beyond Africa.
He charged them to work collectively and seamlessly to ensure a successful hosting by Nigeria in furtherance of the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Agreement to the greater benefit of the Continent and its people.
The NQC Chairman enjoined them individually and collectively to bring their wealth of knowledge and experiences as well as patriotism to bear in the discharge of the assignments relating to the successful hosting of the African Cassava Conference.
Members of the Local Organising Committee for the African Cassava Conference include representatives of National Quality Council as Chair, Nigerian National Accreditation Service (NiNAS), Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), Nigerian Agribusiness Group (NABG), HarvestPlus Nigeria, Marbles & Gardens, Ekap Achi Foundation and ABOMAX Group as event Managers.
The African Cassava Conference is expected to attract participants from across the continent, including farmers, processors, importers, exporters, manufacturers, research institutions, agricultural financial institutions, development partners, Ministries, Departments and Agencies from Federal and State Governments involved in the Cassava and agricultural value chain as well as the mass media.