Insurgency: FG says no famine in North-East region
ABUJA- THE Federal Government, yesterday, declared that there would not be famine in the country, especially in the North-East region, but admitted that the Borno and Yobe states may likely experience a shortage in the supply of food and possible hike in food prices diue to insurgency attacks it suffered over the years.
This was stated by the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh, in his address of welcome at the ongoing Retreat for Directors of the Ministry in collaboration with Synergos, a non profit organisation.
Ogbeh said neither the devastation in the northeast States nor the farmers and herdsmaen crisis in Kaduna state will likely to lead to famine and starvation in the country.
He said: "The prediction of famine is one that people have liked to inflict on the country, saying there will be famine . We must not be a country that is always wishing for the worst. Famine is very unlikely.
"There will be trying times in the northeast because nearly five years, they have not been able to go their farms and the northeast is a major agricultural zone especially Borno and Yobe states which were the main theatres of war.
"On the other hand, there is no state that is as prepared for agriculture as borno state. There are more tractors in Borno state than in 10 States added up.
"The fact that 2 million people were displaced but there is no way we are going to stand by and watch people statrve to death. There may be food shortges and higher prices, yes but as for famine , no."
According to him government has been putting mechanisms in place to ensure all year production of food with bumper harvest of rice and other grains would be coming up in April.
"Food prices are high, but they are also beginning to fall. I have people in the market checking on the prices of beans a month ago and they told me there has been a drop of N80 per mudu in some parts and the harvest are coming out in larger volumes", the Minister said.