Sat, 2 Dec 2023


Food Insecurity: Blame corruption, bad policies – Peter Obi
By: News Editor
Sun, 30 Jul 2023   ||   Nigeria,

Peter Obi, the presidential can­didate of the Labour Party in the February general election in Nigeria, has attributed the cur­rent food insecurity in Nigeria to corruption, poor policies and also wrong implementation of even good ones.

Obi said this on Saturday while answering questions on a tweeter space hosted by @Par­allefacts with the caption: #Pet­erObiliveonparallelfact.

The former Anambra State governor, in a no-hold-bared sub­mission noted that resources are not rightfully channeled to those who need it, noting that there is issue of credibility on who actu­ally get government’s incentives like loans and fertilizers between core farmers and politicians.

Obi said: “What we are expe­riencing is that is causing food crisis is poor implementation of process and resources are not properly channeled where they should go. It is also about some actions and policies that follow the same pattern of corruption which is f helping the situations but worsens it.

“The North is going through a major problem today that is hinged on mass poverty. If you want to solve this problem, you have to pull people out of poverty.

“There is wide uncultivated lands in the north that need to be cultivated.

“Nigeria can make more money from agriculture than oil. Niger State is two times the size of Netherlands and if they can export agricultural products, we can do far better.

“We have massive uncultivat­ed lands in Borno, about 70,000 square kilometers.

“To pull people out of poverty is to invest in this channel but we have to be truthful about it.

“If you know what pro­grammes like ancho-borrowers have been implemented in other countries and solve their prob­lems, you will understand what I am saying.

“The rice millers in Nigeria, are they the ones we are truly funding? Who are we dealing with and what are we trying to achieve?

“We can change all that and do it properly. When it is trans­parently implemented, it can work.

“We have Bank of Agricul­ture domiciled in Kaduna; are these things implemented and who are the beneficiaries of agri­cultural loans and who are those involved; are they politicians or the farmers?

“So, the implementation must be proper and the loan should go directly to those who need it.

“Also such loans must be fol­lowed up and ensure they are rightly used. If you do it proper­ly, prices of foodstuffs will come down.

“The more you pull people out of poverty, the more you reduce poverty.”

Speaking on education, Obi said for the country to enthrone a good educational system, both primary and secondary schools should be free.

He emphasized that the level of development of any nation is dependent on how it values edu­cation, noting that the difference between developed and develop­ing countries is education.

He said: “As a country we have Universal Basic Education (UBE); it means from primary school, basic education is free and I have always argued it should include primary and sec­ondary. The most important tool of measuring of development is education. The more educated you are the more developed you are.

“The only difference between developed and developing is ed­ucation. For me when you save from wastages, the next invest­ment should be in education, especially.

“We need to invest aggressive­ly in education, in health and pull people out of poverty. To me, sec­ondary and primary would have been free.

“I would have funded it ag­gressively. It doesn’t matter whether the schools are owned by private individuals or govern­ment. We will fund them aggres­sively because it is critical and important.“

Obi also said it was high time the Nigerian government de­clared emergency in the nation’s health sector.

Speaking on the exodus of Nigerian doctors abroad, he re­gretted that it was as a result of wrong priority that has made the health sector of Nigeria so poor, leading to movement of Nigerian doctors abroad.



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