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Nigeria Struggles with Food Crisis: Minister, Abubakar Kyari Calls for Mechanized Farming

IMG 20240306 150016 jpg REPORT AFRIQUE International Nigeria Struggles with Food Crisis: Minister, Abubakar Kyari Calls for Mechanized Farming

Agriculture and Food Security Minister Abubakar Kyari addressed the House of Representatives in Abuja, highlighting the urgent need for mechanized farming to alleviate the food crisis gripping Nigeria.

Kyari revealed that the country requires a minimum of 72,000 tractors for farmers to engage in mechanized farming effectively. However, only about 5,000 tractors are currently operational nationwide.

In response to the crisis, the ministry has inked a deal with a manufacturer to supply 2,000 tractors annually for the next five years. The minister attributed the escalating food crisis to factors such as smuggling, flooding, COVID-19, insecurity, and the Central Bank of Nigeria’s cash swap policy.

President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has intervened, instructing the release of grains from the National Strategic Grain Reserve to tackle food insecurity. Additionally, measures including funding for wheat, rice, and cassava production have been initiated.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) have also taken action against smuggling. The NCS announced the arrest of 141 trucks laden with smuggled food items. President Tinubu directed that these goods be sold at moderate prices to locals.

Efforts to address the food crisis must focus on both demand and supply, emphasized House Deputy Speaker Benjamin Kalu. He stressed the need to increase per capita consumption, raise production yields, curb food price inflation, and reduce reliance on food imports. Kalu also highlighted the impact of insecurity on food production, urging decisive action to ensure food security for all Nigerians.

This Article is Fact-Checked. See Policy.
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