Food Security: Govt Policies Not Showing On Average Nigerian’s Stomach – Farmer
A former chairman of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Agric Sector), Mr Wale Oyekoya, believes the policies of the Federal Government has little or no effect on the average Nigerian.
The agricultural expert and farmer said this during his appearance on Sunrise Daily on Thursday.
“All these policies are not really trickling down or showing on the stomach of average Nigerians,” he said on the Channels Television breakfast show.
“Yes, there have been so many robust ideas by the Federal and state governments; but I’m here to be corrected if most of these farmers are really benefitting.”
Mr Oyekoya stressed that while the government has come up with various laws to reform the nation’s agricultural sector, there is a need to focus more on the implementation stage.
He cited the Commercial Agricultural Credit Scheme (CACS) initiated by the Goodluck Jonathan administration.
The expert claimed that less than 15 per cent of farmers benefited from the disbursement of billions of naira by the previous government under the programme.
He added that a part of the fund was benefitted by “political farmers” and more problems were surfacing as the present administration address the issue.
The farmer said, “Definitely, there have been so many policies and the problem has always been the implementation of most of these policies.
“See, it’s a game they play and it’s a bad time that we keep deceiving Nigerians in the process of achieving political points. An average Nigerian will tell you that there is a problem in this country in terms of food security.”
The agricultural expert also condemned a situation where the country still imports certain food, saying such is not good for its economy.
According to him, Nigeria is blessed with fertile soil and good atmosphere while the assertion that the nation is self-sufficient in rice production is a lie.
Mr Oyekoya accused some political leaders of supporting food importation because of greed and urged the government to come to the rescue of farmers in the country.
“We have no business importing any food into this country,” he insisted, saying, “We are doing that because of the greed of some of our leaders; because they capture some of these interventions and instead of them to spend the money here, they spend it elsewhere.”
The expert added, “Look at the price of maize today, do you believe that more than half of the maize we use in this country are still being imported? By the time you produce yours, there is no way you can compete with the importation of some of these things.”