The Governor of Ogun State, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, has commended Nestlé Nigeria for renovating two blocks of six classrooms at Orile Imo, near the company’s Flowergate Factory in Nigeria.
The project, a social act, was in furtherance of efforts to scale up development in underserved communities, and it is expected to pave way for hundreds of pupils to experience formal education.
“Through rural development, providing local employment and encouraging sustainable production practices, Nestlé not only seek to protect the supply and quality of its raw materials, but also to have a positive and long-term impact on the local economy, as well as helping improve the standards of living of rural people”, Senator Amosun observed.
He made the commendation in a speech read for him by the Ogun State Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Barrister Segun Odubela, at a ceremony in Orile Imo to mark the official handing over of the buildings to the school authorities.
Satisfied with the Nestlé’s continuous investments in rural communities to improve their living conditions, Senator urged other multinationals in Nigeria to emulate the good gesture of the company.
Kais Marzouki, Head of Nestlé Central and West Africa, formally commissioned the buildings, marking a new dawn for the excited pupils who are now expected to immerse themselves in rigorous academic vocations to improve their lot.
Technical Manager for CWAR, Jean Luc De Vuyst, said that the school building renovation project is part of an overall effort to ensure the wellbeing of the communities from which Nestlé draw her agricultural commodities and local labour, a process, he said, is vital to the company’s success as a business that delivers value to shareholders.
Country Manager of Nestlé Nigeria, Dharnesh Gordhon, said since Nestlé began operations in Nigeria over fifty years ago, the company’s factories have been major engines for rural development:
“They create employment, provide apprenticeship, training and contribute to local infrastructure, as well as the provision of clean drinking water and the treatment of wastewater”.
Dharnesh said that one of the key objectives of Nestlé Nigeria’s rural development initiatives is to reduce rural poverty and hunger through access to quality education. In this regard, he expects that the buildings being handed over will help enhance access to quality education for rural children in Orile Imo and surrounding villages.
He pledged additional support, including the provision of portable water (hand pump) for ten villages within Flowergate Factory neighborhood and the restoration of the dilapidated Community Health Centre in the Orile Imo Village.
The Olu (Chief) of Orile Imo, Oba Kolawole Olubiyi, thanked management of Nestlé for the noble effort to eradicate illiteracy in his community, taking cognizance of the fact that access to education has the potential of liberating his people from poverty, ignorance and diseases.