On Wednesday, 31st August, 2016, the Director-General/CEO, Federal Institute of Industrial Research Oshodi led a delegation of FIIRO management team on courtesy visit to the Ooni of Ife, His Imperial Majesty, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, Ojaja II. The DG/CEO in her opening remarks congratulated the Ooni of Ife on his installation as the Ooni of Ife and wish him divine wisdom as he leads the entire Yoruba Kingdom. She commended the Ooni for His economic empowerment initiative for youth and women most especially the widows through the Ife Youth Agropreneurship Programme with emphasis on agriculture and agro-processing.
Commenting further, the Dr. (Mrs.) G.N Elemo said this initiative could not have come at a more appropriate time than now when the federal government is focusing on agriculture and agro-processing to diversify the national economy in the wake of dwindling oil revenue. She was of the opinion that this great intervention by His Imperial Majesty will go a long way at addressing the problem of economic recession in the country, create sustainable employment and alleviate poverty. The DG/CEO presented a brief on the activities of the Institute since inception in 1956. She said the Institute has developed over 250 technologies since inception and has worked virtually on all agro-commodities in Nigeria processing them to shelf stable products for commercialization by the micro, small, medium and large enterprises. Dr. (Mrs.) Gloria Elemo said that the Institute would give technical support to ensure the success of the Ife Youth Agropreneurship Programme.
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His Imperial Majesty in his response said that his believe in a better Nigeria is reaffirmed by the presentation by the DG/CEO FIIRO and assured that Nigeria will recover from the present economic challenges. He said he had wondered how the Ife Youth Agropreneurship Initiative would achieve success but he has seen a perfect partner in FIIRO to achieve his dream for the Initiative. The Ooni promised to be a mouth piece for FIIRO and to market the Institute where it matters both home and abroad. He further said that the country need to engage its citizens, particularly the youths in human capacity building and empowerment programmes to be able to achieve the expected economic growth.
Oba Ogunwusi commended the DG/CEO and the management team for the good work and the readiness to partner with the palace on the proposed economic empowerment programme. He urged local, state and federal government to partner with FIIRO to ensure rapid industrialization of Nigeria through promotion and utilization of indigenous technologies. His Majesty advised Nigerians of all cadre both low and high to patronize made in Nigeria goods so as to reduce dependence on imported goods, stimulate local production, and conserve foreign exchange.
In his concluding remarks, His Imperial Majesty gave his Royal blessing to the Institute, promised to engage the Institute annual on the Ife Youth Agropreneurship Summit. Earlier, the DG/CEO FIIRO presented a plaque to His Imperial Majesty as a mark of honor to register the visit of the Institute to the palace. The Ooni in return presented a large portrait of an African woman to the DG/CEO, Dr. (Mrs.) G.N Elemo and proclaimed her “Mama Africa”.