The National President, Nigerian Institute of Food Science and Technology (NIFST), Dr Chijioke Osuji, yesterday in Kano warned President Muhammadu Buhari against succumbing to the pressures being mounted on him to re-open the borders for rice importation.
Speaking at the opening ceremony of the 30th Annual Conference of the Institute with: Innovations and Upgrades for Food Value Chains, Competitiveness in Nigeria’’as its theme, at the Kano Government House Coronation Hall, he called on the Federal Government not to relent in its efforts to further tighten the noose on the country’s borders to halt rice importation.
According to him, it was sad to note that Nigeria, despite being the highest producer of cowpea, yam, sorghum and cash crops, it still remained the highest importer of food items in the world, thereby draining a large chunk of its foreign exchange to import processed food. Osuji noted that lack of strong agriculture policy in the country was partly responsible for the country’s predicament, regretting that, while the oil boom lasted, the country failed to utilise proceeds from the sector to sponsor research projects on agriculture, due to Federal Government’s complacency. Read more