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President Bola Tinubu Declares State of Emergency on Food Insecurity

In a bid to tackle food inflation, President Bola Tinubu, declared a state of emergency on food insecurity. The details of the presidential intervention plan for food security as disclosed include:

  • Activation of land banks, about 500,000 hectares of arable land mapped for farming will immediately impact food output. 
  • The immediate release of fertilisers and grains to farmers and households to mitigate the effects of the subsidy removal. 
  • Immediately create a National Commodity Board to review food prices and maintain a strategic food reserve.
  • Central Bank’s role in funding the agricultural value chain to be enhanced.
  • Create an urgent synergy between the Ministry of Agriculture and Water to ensure water availability throughout the year regardless of the season.
  • Massive mechanisation of the farming process to boost job creation.
  • Deployment of concessionary capital/funding to the agricultural sector.
  • Explore alternative means of storage and transportation to reduce costs.
  • Incorporation of food and water availability into the schemes of the National security council.
  • Remove bottlenecks impeding the exportation of excess food by working with Nigeria Customs.
  • Year-round production of food instead of seasonal farming to ensure access to food.
  • Increase revenue for food production.

The President’s intervention plan would positively affect the nation’s agricultural sector. More notable is the fact that food security is recognized as a matter of national security. However, analysts have concerns over the security of the entire agribusiness value chain and not just food. They note that food is just a part of the entire agricultural value system that includes processing, storage, packaging, logistics, and entrepreneurship. They point out that it is essential to provide insurance coverage, not just for the farmers but also for major farm produce, against theft and extreme weather vagaries.

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