Lai Mohammed, the Minister of Information, has revealed that one of the indelible legacies of the President Muhammadu Buhari (PMB)’ administration, largely downplayed is food security and the scaling up of made in Nigeria products.
Lai Mohammed stated this on Thursday, December 8, 2022 in Abuja.
He spoke at the 9th edition of the ”PMB Administration. Scorecard Series (2015-2023)”. The session featured the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Olamilekan Adegbite.
The scorecard series was launched in October as part of an overall programme to showcase and document the numerous achievements of the Buhari administration
In an opening remark, Lai Mohammed noted that in spite of the crises affecting cost of living globally; the administration had done well since assuming office in the area of self-sufficiency in most basic needs.
“I am sure many of us have seen video clips of empty supermarket shelves in the Western world; especially in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, Russia-Ukraine war and the economic uncertainty; which have all combined to disrupt global supply chains.
“Long before these crises, however, President Muhammadu Buhari had; in a statement that has now turned out to be prescient; admonished Nigerians to grow what they eat and eat what they grow.
“Then, many neither understood the importance of that admonition nor appreciated its relevance.
“Well, it turned out that the consequence of that statement, which made Nigerians to look inward and relied less on imports.
“This has saved Nigerians from hunger, especially during the prolonged global lockdown; when exporting nations shut their ports and borders and nations that relied on imports were struggling to meet their needs,” he said.
Lai Mohammed noted that the worse could have happened if the country had, during the period of the crises, relied on imports to feed itself.
According to the minister, the Presidential Fertiliser Initiative was a successful policy; adding that it made production and distribution of fertiliser to the farmers effective.
He said the increase in the number of fertiliser blending plants in the country from 10 in 2015 to 142and the increase in the number of rice mills also from 10 in 2015 to 80 integrated rice mills, presently aided food sufficiency.
“Our farmers are now part of our economy. Companies and factories are coming up to manufacture process and distribute food.
“If you visit our markets and supermarkets today, what you will see mostly are ‘made in Nigeria’ products. This is a huge progress in such a short time,” he said.