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Gbajumo Osere

Food Security: The Challenge of Our Time

For any nation to achieve tiger economy, the benchmark of economy development, it must properly set her agriculture mechanism in motion within the ambit of limited resources at its disposal. This entails agriculture growth of any nation does not depend on the total population of such nation nor its yearly budget allocating to the sector vested on the kind of austerity major taking by such nation.
Taking austerity measure by government has become necessary in order for such country to overcome the growing threads of both natural and artificial challenges confronting agriculture activities. Natural force could be as result of shortage of rainfall that will lead to drought, formation of gully erosion in farm lands due to the agents of denudation to mention but few.

The artificial problem may occurred as a result by man through bush burning, lack of proper weeding of farms regularly, lack of application of fertilizer or farmyard manure as well as problems of food storage and preservation of farm produceafter harvesting.
Although, even the so-called world super powers like America, France, Britain, Japan and host of other have not just made roaring success vis-à-vis food security on the platter of gold, rather through taking austerity measured in checkmating the growing threads of hunger and starvation.

In an interview in New Nigeria dated 17th July 2012, former minister of petroleum and elders state man in Borno, Alhaji Shettima Ali Monguno said, most of the developed nation particularly America offers substantial amount of subsidy to it farmers in its yearly budget in other to boost their moral, he further said that government 0f such nation usually organizing workshops, seminars so as to expose farmers into rudiments of Modern faming technology.

In a related development Ali kura modu, a veteran farmer and also staff with the ministry of agriculture said the country has long way to go in order to be able to keep the wolf away from the nation doors. Modu further said that aside government at all level is not properly given must attention toward agriculture in term of subsidy not to even talk or buying and preserving of farm produce from the farmers. This ugly trend according to modu forced many farmers to be selling their farm produce after harvesting at low price, especially the perishable ones.

You see unlike developed nation word like America, government normally adopts austerity measure against food shortage by encouraging farmers through it subsidy on agricultural farming. More so government usually buys farm produce from farmers at reasonable prices at the end of each farming season, proses and preserved for future use’’

Let take a retrospective looks at early ‘ s fifties and sixties from the era of first republic to military regime of murtala /obasanjo ‘s their government then came up with good polities and programmers that taken the agriculture sector to higher pedestal take for instance operation feed the nation of obasanjos’s military regime and the green revolution have no doubt cock-a-hoop for the nation in terms of food security.

It was a period of hey days in that the country then begins to export both food and cash crops such as ground nuts, beans cotton, cocoa, pineapples, pawpaw, timbers and cassava and so on to others part of the world. Dark cloud begins to loom the agriculture sector in Nigeria after the victory of shagari’s administration in second republic where most Nigeria including stake holders in farming thrown in the towel of the profession to dogs and opted for oil business in other to get easy money. This ugly trend was the major tool in trade that thrown the nation’s then object poverty due to hunger and starvation before buhari’s military regime stroked in.
However, even abangida’s military administration came up with good policies and programmers that if subsequently follow by others government would have take for instance for IBB military administration policies like directorate of food, road, rural, infrastructure (DFRRI) peoples bank, Nigeria agriculture cooperative bank (NACB) and national directorate of employment (NDE) have no doubt added impetus on. our nation agriculture.

According to Alhaji kaduna a yetaran farmer told this writer on phone that if government want to achieve virile food security there is need to revive all the food wire house are cross the country such as the kano pyramid and add additional ones. More so government need to overhaul the gombe tomatoes processing factory and constructed modern ones across the country so as to avoid scarcity.
We have be abounded land fertile for agriculture, if we fully emberk on agriculture in lung run I believed we can even supply food to most of the Africa nation in commercial quantities. If we take a look at chad basic alone if properly utilize in farming can even feed have of the nation population. These because the fertile land is suitable for the production of wheat, rice water melon, irish potatoes, sweat potatoes and so on government seems to have neglected over the years.

To this end despite all the stylist qualities the nation has vis-à-vis fertile and vast land mass, government and stake holders’ needs to wake up from slumber position in other to be able to chase this monster called food security away from our nation doors be for we all lost.

ALI MUHAMMED ZANNA is a part four (4) student of Mass Communication, University of Maiduguri

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