How Valentine Chicken is turning around fortunes of Shonga community~NEWSEXTRA  - News Extra Online



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Wednesday, 31 March 2021

How Valentine Chicken is turning around fortunes of Shonga community~NEWSEXTRA 

...As KWSG lauds company

By Rowland ’Shuwa 

In the recent past, Shonga community was synonymous to civil unrest largely due to the arrival of the Zimbabwean farmers and the scrabble for land but the story has changed. The community once described as a hotbed for civil unrest recently played host to a colorful ceremony celebrating peace, harmony and togetherness in business between Valentine Chicken and the community.

Giving an insight into the remarkable transformation in an interview with This medium  during the program, the Emir of Shonga, HRH (Dr.) Haliru Yahaya noted that, “initially they started as farmers but now there is a corporate structure, a corporate affair, and this is able to knit the company workers together and there is a beautiful harmony and we have had this for some time.”

On the different benefits so far accrued to the community, the royal father told This medium   that about 700 people from the community are in the employment of the company. “You know what that means to youth restiveness and unemployment. Furthermore, they have been paying a minimum wage of N31000 so really it is a good injection into the economy of this community and its environs and we are very delighted with that. 

“Also, nutrition is improved as we have chicken at very good prices so the people take more chicken than before and there is also spin offs in terms of trade. Some people take chicken to Ilorin from the community, some as far as Lagos and make good profit. Some have vehicles that transport chicken from the nursey to the abattoirs, it is a whole lot of economic activities,” he said.

While agreeing that once in a while there’s a bit of topsy-turvy industrial relations, he commended the skillful management of the Managing Director and other management staff for always being proactive.

Speaking further, the royal father disclosed that the company was actively involved in its Corporate Social Responsible (CSR) to the community. According to the Emir, these activities cut across education, health and other sectors of life.

“Our youths got surplus cash now, you know when a youth who probably lives with his parents earns N31000 and above there’s not much he/she would do with money so we have diverted their attention to rice farming. If you go over there you will see them in their hundreds engaging in rice cultivation. So basically, this is an affair we call town and farm; the farm is engaging the community, knitting the workers and community members together and the community is reciprocating,” the Emir said. 

While congratulating both staff and management of the company, the Technical Adviser on Agriculture to the executive governor of the state, Alhaji Abdulquawiy Olododo, in his speech said the anniversary celebration is an “opportunity to recount the successes of the past and take charge of the potentials that lies in the future thereby inspiring hope of a greater future.”

He lauded Valentine Chicken on her great contributions to the development of the state through agriculture stressing that the company is contributing immensely to food security, employment and nutrition not only in Kwara state but in other parts of the country as well.

In his words, “Recounting the successes of the past years, no doubt Valentine Chicken has contributed immensely to the development in Kwara State through its activities in the poultry farming chain among others. 

“The company has created thousands of jobs for many Kwarans directly and indirectly, improve living standards of Kwarans, food security, nutrition in Kwara and other parts of Nigeria. 

“These efforts of Valentine Chicken are laudable, particularly the support given to local farmers, youth and women within and around the host community.”

He however disclosed that a lot of wok still lies ahead in terms of food security and job creation through agriculture. He therefore called on the management of Valentine Chicken to double its efforts in the poultry value chain in order to increase impact on jobs, food security and living standards. 

The Governor’s aide specifically delivered a personal message of Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq, “His Excellency, Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq has directed me to assure you that Kwara State Government under his leadership will give all necessary support to ensure that you continue to thrive in Kwara state” he said. 

He further reminded the management of Valentine Chicken and other stakeholders of the 10-year Kwara state Agriculture Transformation Plan earlier unveiled by the Governor in January 2021 and urged management of the company and other stakeholders to key into the vision of the present administration so as to make Kwara state a pride among her peers.

In his remarks, the state chairman of Agriculture and Allied Employees Union of Nigeria (AAEUN), Dr. David Kayode Ehindero, appreciated the royal father, workers and management of Valentine Chicken for ensuring peace reigns in the community.

He said, “Whatever we see today is due largely to the good working relations and peaceful labour interactions between the workers and the company. And this is also made possible by the fatherly role played by the Emir of Shonga. This is why we can gather here today to reward hardwork and make merry in love and unity.”   
While assuring the workers that their welfare is paramount to the Union and Management, he stressed the need for them to put in more efforts so as to ensure that Valentine Chicken conquers not only the Nigerian market but also the world market.

In an interview with This medium  the Managing Director of Valentine Chicken Mr. Albertus Krinstin said the anniversary is a celebration of love and peace.   

“In the last few years, we have had a peaceful environment and a good working relation. This is the second anniversary of peace and harmony and togetherness in the business. This is our way of saying thank you to our workers and the community and also encouraging our workers to be more committed,” he said.
While describing his hosts as friendly, accommodating and hardworking people, the MD said the company is proud to be based in Shonga, pointing out that the company is poised to service the whole country. 
“As far as infrastructure is concerned, we are based here in Shonga but we service the whole country right to Port Harcourt, the East, the West, we send to the North. We are proudly based here but we service the whole country,” Mr. Krinstin said. 

Also speaking with This medium  the chairman Valentine Chicken Workers Union, Mr. Jubril Mohammed Katun explained that the program was initially salted for February 14 as a way of celebrating St. Valentine but had to be moved to March because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

He commended the management of Valentine Chicken for being the first company to implement the new national minimum wage stressing that the management had being very cooperative with the Union which had made labour relations peaceful.

Katun however urged management to improve in the organization of the program next year. He explained that monetary reward could be given to awardees and winners of the contests at the next program.

Highlights of the program include presentation of awards to different category of workers, a contest for Miss Valentine and cultural display. Prince MK from Bida treated the gathering to cultural music while his dancers performed the cultural stanka dance.

Also, the Emir of Shonga, HRH (Dr.) Haliru Yahaya, on behalf of staff of Government Secondary School, Shonga and Shonga Emirate, gave an award of excellence to the management of Valentine Chicken for its contribution to education in the emirate.

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