Gov. Owelle Rochas Okorocha has applauded the initiatives of Roche Group in reviving and repositioning Imo Palm Plantation to a profitable venture. The governor who barred his mind shortly after he was conducted round the plantation, milling plant and about 85,000 improved palm seedling imported from Cuba by Roche Group, said recent positive development in the establishment under the new management has justified the decision of his administration to concession Imo Palm Plantation to the Irish company which in a swoop earned the state government about 3.5 billion Naira.
Gov. Okorocha directed the management of Roche Group to give 5% of the profit to the landlord communities in line with the concepts of the community government. He reaffirmed the commitment of his administration give priority to agriculture towards making Imo self-reliant with a booming economy and massive job opportunities. Gov. Okorocha lamented the massive fraud and embezzlement in Imo Palm Plantation under the previous administration which left the establishment in a debt profile of over N1billion. The governor who expressed worries over the embezzlement of about N450 million deposited for Palm produce not yet supplied and N750 million salaries and allowances owed to workers before the present administration came on board, said while government plans towards addressing the problem, it would also consider inviting the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to bring all involved in the corrupt deals to face the full wrath of the law.
Earlier, the Managing Director of Imo Palm Plantation, Neil Danby said the management has introduced several innovations to revive and reposition the establishment for optimal productivity. He added that machines with modern technology in agro-business have been imported and put into use which are expected to increase the output in Imo Palm Plantation in the nearest future. Danby further disclosed the delivery of the 85,000 improved seedling from Cuba and that modern milling plant that will soon be installed for enhance productivity.