The former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar has reiterated his resolve to connect Nigerian farmers to waiting product off taker both locally and internationally and also to create thousands of jobs in all the states of the federation.
Atiku stated this over the weekend in Abuja while officially opening a world class eatery known as Chicken Cottage Quick Services Restaurants at the Jabi Lake Mall.
Disclosing the idea behind the venture, Atiku said that his family initially went into the deal in 2014 with a British foreign firm, Chicken Cottage, but a Malaysian firm later bought the franchise from the British firm and they decided to continue and expand the project to cover all the states of the federation.
He noted that Nigerians will be the major beneficiary from the project as all the raw materials will be sourced locally hence Nigerians farmers will have a handy off taker to evacuate their produce and expose it to the international market.
He said, “I recall with satisfaction that the processes leading to the successful opening of this restaurant started in 2014 with the incorporation of Food Merchants International Investments Ltd by my family. The company owns the Nigerian franchise for the UK quick service restaurant brand Chicken Cottage. Subsequently, the Malaysians bought over the brand and continued the relationship we started with the UK owners.
“As part of our objectives, we aim to be the number one chicken restaurant chain in Nigeria.
“After this outlet, we intend to open several other outlets in strategically important locations in Nigeria. Our target is to have at least One Chicken Cottage Restaurant in every state in Nigeria. Ultimately, we intend to develop Chicken Cottage Nigeria as the regional hub for all operations in Sub-Saharan Africa. Towards this end I have given approval to the management to commence talks with Chicken Cottage International.”
Commenting on how the venture will create jobs for the youths he continued,
“You can be sure that having at least one chicken cottage in every state will help get Nigerians working again. We will provide gainful employment to thousands of Nigerians who would be earning living wages which in turn contributes to reducing unemployment in Nigeria.”
Atiku added that through value chain creation, farmers and artisans will also benefit from the deal.
“The main raw materials for the products are agricultural produce (Chicken, Vegetables, Potato, rice etc).These are all locally produced. My ultimate joy will be to patronise our local farmers and see them have their produce bought and used here in Nigeria and Africa thereby empowering them.
“Furthermore, the multiplier benefits of this enterprise would extend to transporters, beverage suppliers, appliance manufacturers, artisans, furniture makers, etc.”
The event was witnessed by representatives of the Malaysian firm that flew into Nigeria and some high profile politicians and members of the National Assembly.
Myke Uzendu, Abuja