Advertisements
Connect with us

Nigeria

More Nigerians react to Buhari’s directive on food import

Published

on

By Mustapha Sumaila and News Agency of Nigeria

Stakeholders have continued to react to the recent directive given by President Muhammadu Buhari to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to restrict forex on food items being imported into the country.

Some are in support of the president, commending him for making Nigerians to look inward to consume what is produced in the country, while some feel the nation is not yet ripe to meet the needs of its citizens in terms of food production.

Others feel the directive negates the independence of the apex bank.

Mr Buhari had on Tuesday directed CBN to place forex restriction on imported foods when he hosted APC governors during Eid-el-Kabir in Daura, Katsina State, claiming his administration had achieved food security.

Reacting to the development, Tope Fasua, an economic expert commended Mr Buhari for giving such directive which he described as the right step in the right direction.

Advertisement

SGF Campaign AD

Mr Fasua urged Mr Buhari to match his words with action by going beyond pronouncement and ensure full implementation to enable Nigerians consume what is produced in the country.

The expert lauded the idea but, however, said that the government must make sure that the directive was fully implemented.

“I believe it is in the right direction but we need more than pronouncements. The boost in food production needed to bridge the gap cannot be left to the mere pursuit of profits.

“It should be strategically pursued using several instruments including mass mobilisation.

“Otherwise, this may end up counterproductive if only a few moneybags with stolen cash or unfettered access to bank loans are able to produce while the majority are at their mercy.”

Zainab Abubakar of the Department of Economics, Federal University Dutse, Jigawa, said looking inward to consume what is produced in the country was good but certain things needed to be put in place.

Mr Abubakar argued that Nigeria does not have the capacity to produce what the entire population of about 200 million people would consume.

Advertisement

SGF Campaign AD

“It would have been a good directive but certain things ought to be put in place in order to avoid creating more problems. Nigeria does not yet have the capacity to produce what the entire population will consume at the moment.

“There is going to be far less supply of food than what is demanded and this will lead to inflation.

“There is the need to boost the agriculture sector further and need for more and robust infrastructure like power supply and transportation facilities, while the Anchor Borrowers Programme among others should be given more priority too,” the economist said.

Meanwhile, the Centre for Social Justice (CSJ) a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) faulted the directive given by Buhari.

In a statement signed by a Director of the centre, Eze Onyekpere, it said the directive was not in line with S.1 (3) of the CBN Act 2007.

Onyekpere explained that the Act provided that in order to facilitate the achievement of its mandate under this Act and the Banks and Other Financial Institutions Act, and in line with the objective of promoting stability and continuity in economic management, “the CBN shall be an independent body in the discharge of its functions”.

“There are no provisions in the CBN Act or any other existing law empowering the President to run or give directives on foreign exchange management or any other component of Monetary Policy.

“This directive erodes the independence and autonomy of the apex bank,” Mr Onyekpere said.

He said that if the CBN had given the directive, it would have required a phased and gradual approach in determining the point at which foreign exchange allocations for food imports would be reduced.

According to him, this will involve a multi-sectoral engagement of farmers, food processors, the banking industry, transport and power sectors among others.

“It is imperative to clarify that we support every effort at increasing local food production and reducing Nigeria’s dependence on imported food products.

“But in the drive to attain the required level of self-sufficiency, we must not expose Nigerians to undue hardship.

“This brings us to another issue, which is that Nigeria is far from attaining food security and has not even started the race for food sovereignty.

“Stopping the allocation of foreign exchange for the importation of needed food items will only increase their price since there will still be demand for the goods.

“Unless there is a ban on the importation of these food items, importers will still be free to source for foreign exchange from alternative sources to import them.

“Increase in the price of food at a time of grave economic crisis, increasing poverty and misery can only deepen the already fragile and precarious living conditions of the average Nigerian. Even an outright ban will be a misnomer in the circumstances” he explained.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that CBN had already listed 10 food items as priorities in the quest to grow the economy and achieve food security in the country

Mr Godwin Emefiele, the CBN Governor, while reeling out the policy road map for his second tenure of five years in June, announced that the food items to be focused on were Rice, Maize, Cassava, Cocoa, Tomato, Cotton, Oil-palm, Poultry, Fish, and Livestock/Dairy.

Mr Emefiele explained that the choice of these 10 items was driven by the amount spent on the importation of these items into the country and the more than 10 million jobs that could be created over the next five years.

He said efforts were being made to expand cultivation and processing of these items in the country.

“So far, we have held a series of engagements with importers and producers of these products.

“Most of them have committed that they would install or expand their production capacities in Nigeria. We believe these measures will help to boost not only our domestic outputs but also improve our annual non-oil exports receipts from two billion dollars in 2018 to 12 billion dollars by 2023.

“Our intervention programmes will strengthen the linkage between farmers and agro-processors and manufacturers by ensuring that the output of farmers is purchased by agro-processors and manufacturers.

“This linkage with agro-processors is necessary in order to prove that farmers are creditworthy individuals with bankable contracts.

“It will also help to unlock private capital flows from financial institutions to farmers in order to enable them meet orders from agro-processors,” he explained. (NAN)

Nigeria

Gov AbdulRazaq urges youths to shun drug abuse, other vices

Published

on

Gov AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq of Kwara has called on Nigerian youths to shun drug abuse and other vices that could hinder them from realising their lifetime ambitions.

AbdulRazaq made the call on Wednesday when he received members of the state chapter of Scouts’ Association of Nigeria (SAN), led by its Commissioner, Deacon Olabisi Afolayinka, at the Government House, Ilorin.

The governor, who recalled, with nostalgia, his days as a scout boy in Capital School, Kaduna, said that the organisation had contributed immensely to nurturing youths to become good citizens and contribute to the development of the country.

“This is an association that prepares youths on how to be good citizens and how to relate with their fellow countrymen.

ALSO READ: Let’s redouble our efforts, Lai Mohammed charges staff members

“These are virtues that the youth of today should maintain. In our own days as youths, there were no rampant cases of drug abuse,” he said.

ALSO READ:

The governor urged the youth to use their energy for productive ventures and join the organisation to make positive contributions to society.

AbdulRazaq, who was made the organisation’s Ambassador of Peace, promised to live up to expectations by giving necessary support to the body through relevant government agencies.

Earlier in his remarks, Afolayanka said that the constitution of the body automatically made the governor of any state its patron and the president grand patron.

He commended AbdulRazaq for the audience granted the association, saying that this was the first time any governor would be hosting them in the state in the last 21 years.

Afolayanka said that the association was founded to build young boys and girls to make useful contributions to the country.

The SAN commissioner noted that cultism and other vices were not rampant in schools in the past when the scouts held sway.

He urged the governor to continue to support the association for effective discharge of its responsibilities in the state.

Continue Reading

Nigeria

NYSC: Bwari assures Corp members improved welfare

Published

on

The Chairman of Bwari Area Council, Mr John Gabaya has assured members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) of his administration’s readiness to improve on their welfare.

Gabaya gave the assurance when representatives of the FCT NYSC Secretariat, and some members of the NYSC 2019 Batch B’, paid him a courtesy visit on Wednesday in Abuja.

Gabaya, who appreciated the team for the gesture, said that it was the duty of the council, as host of the NYSC Orientation Camp in the city to ensure it gave the Corps maximum support.

ALSO READ: I won’t tolerate indiscipline, Agric minister warns

He acknowledged the fact that the camp in Kubwa, was faced with infrastructure challenges, adding that efforts would be made to amendments it and bring succour to the corps members.

ALSO READ:

“The council, in its capacity, alongside the management of the scheme, would meet and discuss how it would make the development feasible including our best effort to add a little raise to their allowance,” Gabaya said.

Earlier, the NYSC FCT Coordinator, Mrs Waleeda Isa, said the visit was to acquaint its officials with the new administration of the council as host of the orientation camp.

Isa decried the sorry state of infrastructure at the NYSC camp, saying “their lodge in the camp is dilapidated and needs attention”.

“Also, it would go a long way for those who serve under the council, if your administration can kindly add a little to their allowance to augment what the Federal Government is giving them.

“We will be honoured if you make these efforts so that we feel your presence and know that you have us at heart,” she said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the NYSC 2019 Batch B’ corp members have reported and would be inaugurated at the orientation camp on Aug. 22.

Continue Reading

Nigeria

Lagos govt boosts MCC services in Eti-Osa Tribune Online

Published

on

THE Lagos State Government says it has completed yet another Maternal and Childcare Centre (MCC) located in Eti-Osa Local Government Area of the state to increase residents’ access to qualitative maternal and child healthcare.

The state Commissioner of Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi, made this known on Wednesday in Lagos during an advocacy meeting with community leaders and residents of Badore.

Abayomi was represented by the Director of Projects, Ministry of Health, Dr Olusola Oduwole.

He said that the continuous implementation of strategic maternal child survival interventions, policies, programmes and projects by the government was geared toward the reduction of maternal and child mortality in the state.

ALSO READ: Presidency announces Adesina, Shehu, Akande others’ reappointment

According to him, the local and national statistics of maternal and child mortality and morbidity rate are of utmost concern to the government hence, the adoption of various strategies to combat it.

“One of these strategies is the construction of MCC, a specialised healthcare centre for mothers and children.

“It is aimed at taking maternal and child healthcare closer to the people by reducing the travel time and improving the quality care to the highest possible standard,” the commissioner said.

ALSO READ:

Abayomi said that the MCC was located on Ogombo Road along Abraham Adesanya Estate in Eti-Osa local government area.

According to him, the facility is a four-floored 110-bed complex designed to respond to maternal and child health issues.

“It will provide quality services for the restoration, improvement and promotion of the health and well-being of women, babies and children in the local government area and adjoining communities.

“It has two theatres where surgeries can be done; consulting rooms; treatment rooms, antenatal and postnatal wards; baby nursery; pharmacy, laboratory and offices, among others,” he said.

Abayomi said that the construction of MCCs in the state was designed to stem the tide of maternal deaths which occurred as a result of delivery by unskilled birth attendants, haemorrhage, infection, obstructed labour and malaria, among others.

He said that women should not die in the course of life procreation process.

“The concept of the construction of MCCs was mooted with the conviction that these interventions will impact positively on the health indices of our mothers and children who constitute a significant percentage of clients attended to at public health facilities.

“The Eti-Osa MCC will commence operation before the end of the week and will serve as a referral centre to all primary health facilities in Eti-Osa local government and accompanying communities.

“It will yield the much desired and anticipated impact towards the reduction of maternal and child mortality in the area,” the commissioner said.

Continue Reading

Nigeria

Psychiatric resident doctors vow to continue strike %

Published

on

THE Association of Resident Doctors, Federal Neuro-Psychiatric Hospital, Yaba, has resolved to continue its ongoing indefinite strike demanding for optimal mental healthcare for patients.

The President of the association, Dr Afeez Enifeni, said in a statement on Wednesday, in Lagos, that the strike would continue until the management addressed the work experience of the overworked doctors.

Enifeni said that the doctors had on Aug. 19 held a meeting to review the current industrial action.

ALSO READ: China investigating death of Nigerian in Guangzhou ― Envoy

The doctors accused the hospital management of being insensitive to the plight of the in and outpatients, who according to him, are receiving suboptimal mental health services.

ALSO READ:

“The hospital management has blatantly refused to replace the annual exit of resident doctors for the past four years.

“Instead, they have let patient load and clinical work increase significantly for hapless resident doctors whose health and academic pursuits have suffered irreparably.

“In light of the above, the management’s insistence on employing only five locum doctors is highly provocative of our demands.

“It hardly improves the status quo which already puts overworked resident doctors at the brink of academic failure, health challenges and malpractice suits,” he said.

He urged President Muhammadu Buhari to prevail on the hospital’s management to do the needful in line with the administration’s next level agenda.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that the resident doctors had embarked on an indefinite strike on July 31 over non-employment of more resident doctors at the hospital.

Continue Reading

Nigeria

AIDS: Society says self-stigma more destructive than HIV/AIDS

Published

on

THE Coalition of Civil Society Network on HIV/AIDS in Nigeria (COCSNHAN) on Wednesday said that self-stigma was more destructive to people living with HIV than the disease.

Mr Ikenna Nwakamma, first Co-chairman of the society, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja that it was the major reason people living with HIV default from treatments.

Nwakamma, who called for the incorporation of mental health services in the national HIV programme, said it was imperative to rescue patients from the dangers of self-stigma.

ALSO READ: 200,000 children die annually due to preventable diseases in Nigeria — EU

ALSO READ:

“Very important, the issues of self-stigma is hardly talked about and that is even more destructive; it is the major reason people living with HIV default in their treatment,” he said.

The society’s co-chairman explained that mental health would make people living with HIV become co-managers of their health.

According to him, mental health problems among people living with HIV is the new epidemic and we must deal with it squarely.

Nwakamma restated the plans of the society to set up a monitoring system that would capture and report cases of stigma and discrimination in health facilities.

He promised that any identified case would be used to send a strong warning to others.

Continue Reading

Trending

    Welcome to Afroinsider News, the Nò 1 Pan African, independent news-aggregation website. The views expressed herein are the views of the linked author exclusively and not necessarily the views of Afroinsider or its advertisers. If you believe there is a genuine DMCA copyright infringement, please contact us immediately so that your photography or content can be reviewed and, if necessary, removed.