Yemisi Bamgbose opens up on his multimillion naira oil palm plantation - NIGERIAN NEWSORBIT


Tuesday, January 04, 2022

Yemisi Bamgbose opens up on his multimillion naira oil palm plantation

In a dwindling economy like ours, most NIgerians have shifted their focus to agriculture exploring various prospects it presents such as oil palm plantation as a source of income with a lot of positive stories to tell.

One of such is the immediate past President of Radio and Theatre Arts Workers Union of Nigeria, RATTAWU, Dr. Yemisi Bamgbose,  who veered into the agricultural business some 15 years ago and today has good stories to share.
Recently, Dr Bamgbose, the incumbent Executive Secretary of Broadcasting Organization of Nigeria (BON) played host to some selected journalists, who he took round a tour of his acres of oil palm plantation, with better financial prospects  in the years to come. The expanse of land is located in Odeda Local Government Area of Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital, 

Bamgbose, who is now the Executive Seceretary of the Broadcasting Organisation of Nigeria, BON,  took the newsmen down memory lane on how the journey started "I started this farm in the year 2007. It was the money that I wanted to take to the North to campaign for RATTAWU presidency that I used to start this business. As I was making the plan, God woke me up in the middle of the night and said, if you use that money to campaign, that will be the cause of your death.

" This meant that I would have lost the money, if I did that. As I was doing that, a friend of mine came in..He is a younger friend who just completed a course at FUNNAB. He requested the use of a space at my house to rear palm kernel and I obliged him. Thereafter, he encouraged me to invest in palm trees. At that time, I was 47 years old that was how the journey started".

When he started, Bamgbose,  disclosed that he purchased no fewer than three acres of land on which he planted the palm trees and since, the business has continued  to grow. " Along the line, I started growing the palm plantation. I bought another 15 acres in the year 2009 .That was how we built the farm to its present position, where we now have about 100 acres and we are still growing"

As expected, every  business has its teething problems and challenges that served as a form of setback to such business. According to  Bamgbose, fighting the incursion of grass cutters was the major challenge  that the business has to contend with at inception,  but as time goes on, this problem was confronted headlong.

"It was a major challenge.When we started, I planted cassava and other crops. When I got to the farm and saw the stems of cassava, I was always happy, but alas! after harvesting the cassava, ther was no single palm tree, the grass cutters have eaten up everything".

He explained further " They normally enjoy the fruits and they ate it from the root and destroyed everything. So, I went to Ibadan to seek help and they gave me a chemical to mix with palm wine to be placed on the farm.  This naturally killed  the grass cutters, but it was dangerous to human heath , because if anyone consumes the grass cutters that were killed, the person will die. So, I jettisoned that and began to look for another way out". 

" I deviced another means. I went to Itoku and got tins of Bournvita and we removed the base lid and this was used to guard the newly planted palm trees and through this we were able to safeguard it and we solved the problem of grass cutters once and for all".

On the management of the farm, he said it was not too difficult to manage a palm tree as there are modern way of keeping the palm plantation clean through spraying with chemicals and once the oil palm plantation is clean, everything will be alright.

He counselled that anyone who wants to venture into the business must seek the experience and expertise of those already involved in the business.

" My advice is that whoever does not have interst should not venture into this business. If you want to go into this business, you either patronise someone with the right expertise or you go to the Nigerian Institute for Oil Palm Research, NIFOR  to buy oil palm seedlings,  because the seedlings can be deceptive and this can discourage people from getting involved ".

For those who are still in government  service and have the intention of venturing into the business, Bamgbose said: " it is very easy to venture into the business. It is just about planning. For instance, if you still have about 15 years  to go in the service. If you are a middle level officer, you can start it. How do I mean, you can use the next five years to acquire lands.You can go to far places where you can still get land at a cheaper rate per acre. My principle is that as long as people are in that area; as long as Okada can get to that place, you can invest there. If you can get there in an hour, it is a good place".

" if you have about 15 years in-service, if you start now and keep N20,000 monthly in a co-operative society, by the time you get a chunk, you can start buying the lands and if you replicate that in there for four years, you are on the path.So, it is doable and I want to encourage as many people that are thinking about good retirement plan to consider this venture.

While speaking about the unerous advantages of investing in the business especially on the durability of the palm trees, he said: " for instance,  if ther is a fire outbreaks, you can only have a break of about four to six months, after that the palm trees will yield double for you at harvest. So, it is not something that can be destroyed by fire for ever", he assured

"This business is capital intensive, but there are lots of benefits in it. For instance, when I was buying this land, it was sold for between N40,000 or so per acre, but now an acre of land in this area goes for between N750,000 to N800,000 naira. So, apart from the benefits drivable from the palm trees, if you decide to sell the lands thereafter you will make a lot of money"

In his analysis, which showed that palm oil,  a bye-product of the palm trees which are so expensive, enthused that the price per litre  would  always be the triple of whatever a litre of Premium Motor Spirit popularly know as petrol  could cost.

"  Lets get this thing straight. Even if they withdraw subsidy on petrol, the price per litre of petrol can not be equal to the price per litre of palm oil. This is because a keg of palm oil of 30 litres is sold for N24,000 naira now.Even if a litre of petrol becomes N300 naira it can be up to a litre of palm oil because a litre of palm oil today goes for between N900 naira to N1000 naira.".

No comments:

Post a Comment