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Nigeria’s Food Import Hits N4.2 Trillion Yearly, Says Body - Food - Nairaland

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Nigeria’s Food Import Hits N4.2 Trillion Yearly, Says Body by oluwabamis(m): 7:39am On Oct 12, 2010
Nigeria’s food import hits N4.2 trillion yearly, says body
NIGERIA’S food import may have hit N4.2 trillion yearly, according to All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN), which alleged over the weekend that the country was yet to be truely independent, despite celebration that heralded the 50th Independence Anniversary, recently.
Their reason was that the country was yet to be self sufficient in food production and has continued to depend on far away countries to feed the teaming populace.
Infact, they put the yearly value of food import from these countries at $2.8 billion.
Specifically, the President, All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN), Dr. Abdullahi Adamu, in Abuja, over the weekend, said that Nigeria is not yet a sovereign nation, because of her inability to effectively feed its over 150 million citizens.
He maintained that at 50 Nigeria has noting to celebrate, adding that in spite of the natural endowments and huge agricultural resources and potentials, the country still import food to the tune of over $2.8 billion every year.
He said, “we cannot not really beat our chest and say we are a sovereign state, there is a question mark on that and that question mark has to do with if you liken a whole Nigeria to be a family, if am a head of a family and I can’t feed my family and dependant, I cannot be said to be a good household leader. You liken that to a nation, if a nation cannot feed his people, the question of your sovereignty or independence is questioned.”
The president of AFAN, who told newsmen before the commencement of 2010 National Agricultural Show organised by the National Agricultural Foundation of Nigeria (NAFN), maintained that farmers in the country are being put out of business at the expenses of foreign farmers because of food importation.
Adamu maintained that farmers in the country have the duty to feed the country, but are being inhibited by government’s stringent agricultural policies.
Making a case on the inability of farmers to access the N200 million intervention fund by the Federal Government, he maintained that conditions for accessing the loan facility are too stringent, most especially for small scale farmers.
“We have the duty to feed the country, but the condition in which the farmers produce is still very difficult and demanding, and we are not able to produce enough because the policy has not being properly evaluated.”

Frowning at the slow speed at which policies, which have to do with Nigerian farmers, are being executed, Adamu urged the Federal Government to stop the importation of rice and other farm produce into the country.
Speaking on the importance of the 4th Agricultural show schedule to hold from 12th-16th October 2010 in Abuja, he said the aim of the show was to showcase Nigeria’s abundant agricultural potentials, resources and products, and open way for improvement in the future development of agriculture.
Meanwhile, the Federal Government has been called upon to boost agricultural sector of the country to ensure that Nigeria, after 50 years of independence can feed the teeming population.
Senator Alloysous Etuk, member representing Ikot Ekpene, at the National Assembly made this known in Uyo while commenting on the 50th celebration. He said the government should encourage not only encourage mass farming but mechanised farming with intensive and large production.
He stressed that Federal Government should encourage people to go back to farm as a way of combating unemployment in the country.
His words, “Nigeria at 50, we have not reached the level of feeding ourselves. We have a duty to feed ourselves but Nigeria has not been able to feed the teeming population in the country. We must go back to farm and make sure we generate enough strategies to revitalise our sub agricultural sector to help us feed ourselves no matter our population.
“Government should encourage not only mass farming but mechanised farming because the quantum of food production in any nation does not actually depend on how many farmers we have in the field but it depends on how intensive and how large and productive the hands in the field can produce.
“Nigeria has many farmers but yet we cannot feed ourselves. People must go back to farm. The government must also use agriculture as a system of mopping up unemployment in the countr”

Re: Nigeria’s Food Import Hits N4.2 Trillion Yearly, Says Body by oluwabamis(m): 8:21am On Oct 12, 2010
I must confess to you that this is a major drain on our nation. The president should make all effort to reduce this wastage. We as a nation cant progress with this knid of expenditure.

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