Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, says it will revive its 180 tonnes per day Rice Mill at Elele Alimini in Emohua Local Government Area of Rivers State, as part of its efforts to ensure food security in the region.
The NDDC Executive Director, Projects, Sir Victor Antai, who stated this during an inspection visit to the rice mill, described the suspension of production at the factory as disheartening.
He explained that the rice mill was established as part of NDDC’s industrialisation strategies and expressed optimism that when it returns to full production, it would create employment opportunities for youths.
Antai said: “I want to thank the NDDC for building the rice mill. It is a gigantic project, the biggest in the Niger Delta Region. We went into a partnership with the Elephant Group. Unfortunately, they stopped production in 2022.
“We decided to visit the facility to know why they stopped production, and to also look for the possible ways of bringing it back to production again.
“The NDDC has to meet its mandate of food security in consonance with the drive of the Managing Director, Dr. Samuel Ogbuku, who is determined to create employment for the teeming youths of the region.”
Antai said it was comforting that most of the equipment at the facility were still intact and functional, stating: “With the briefing from the chief engineer of this facility, all the equipment are still functioning. What is left is for us to interface with the management of Elephant Group. In no time the MD and management will take a decision on how best to handle this facility and get it up and running.
The Executive Director, Projects emphasised the need to connect the rice mill to a dedicated power line from a power injection station to guarantee steady power supply to the facility and reduce cost of production.
He was responding to an appeal by a technical staff of the Elephant Group, Engr.Uchechi Emejuru, who lamented that the mill was running on 500 KVA, rather than 800 KVA power supply suitable for its operations