23 November 2012

Nigeria: Naccima Hails FG Policy On Food Recovery Plan

The National Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA) on Friday praised the Federal Government plan to reduce importation of food.

Mr Tunji Olukoya, the Chairman, Agricultural Trade Group of the association, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos, that the reduction would enhance the nation's agricultural productivity.

"If the policy is properly implemented, it will ensure that Nigeria becomes self-sufficient," Olukoya said.

NAN reports that the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Akinwumi Adesina, recently announced the approval of N9.7 billion by the Federal Government to implement the Flood Recovery Food Production plan.

The fund is meant to aid the farmers in the flood ravaged states.

Olukoya said that several steps needed to be taken to improve on farm production.

"This should not only be through fertiliser distribution but by equally introducing mechanised farming and commercialisation.

"It is a good policy but again, it must be properly mapped out before implementation, encouraging commercialisation, mechanisation of farms and easing access to loan facilities.

"The country stands to be self-reliant and self-sufficient if productivity is to be enhanced," he said.

Recalling the ravaging floods that washed away many farmlands, Olukoya said that the fund would also enhance the rehabilitation process in the affected areas.

The chairman urged the Federal Government to ensure speedy implementation of the plan to savage the unfortunate situation.

"It was an unfortunate situation and we understand the plight of farmers and individuals affected.

"We see that the government is already taking steps in that direction and it is applaud able.

"These farmlands can be rehabilitated, the farmers can be given alternative places to ensure that Nigeria do not begin to import food," he said.

Olukoya said that the government decision was achievable if all stakeholders would work with local farmers.


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