The Nigerian Senate has backed the move by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security to invest more on mechanized farming in order to curb food insecurity in the country.
Speaking during an interactive session organized by the Senate Committee on Agriculture Production Services and Rural Development and the Ministry/MDAs, all the Senators that spoke believe with modern technologies, mass production of farm produce will enhance enough sustainability of food security in the country.
Chairman, Senate Committee on Agriculture Production Services and Rural Development Senator Saliu Mustapha said Agriculture remains the most important sector of the country’s economy, therefore the senate will continue to legislate on policies that would ensure boast food security in Nigeria.
“Agriculture still remains the most important sector of our economy and will for a long time be the driving force of the national economy. Nigeria cannot survive as a nation without food security for her citizens. With majority of the population residing in the rural areas and are predominantly into farming as a means of livelihood, we as a players in this all important sector cannot afford to fail in meeting their expectations”Senator Mustapha said.
Senator Mustapha said the Senate had made several remarkable interventions and passed several laws that will improve agriculture, therefore urged the Ministry to seek more collaborations that would revamp agriculture in a shortest time frame.
He said the Committee will continue to collaborate with the Ministry and other stakeholders to promote the diversification of oil dominated economy
through viable investment that will enhance farmer’s capacity to boast food production.
Also speaking, Senator Ipalibo Harry Banigo, said 70% of Nigerian farmers live in rural areas, therefore must be supported In whichever ways that will ensure food sufficiency in the country.
Senator Banigo also urged the Ministry to support youth and women who are engaging in farming with funds and modern facilities to enable them produce sufficient farm products for the nation.
“Seventy percent of Nigerian farmers live in rural areas, they need support, they need funds, they need modern equipments to farm. The Ministry should encourage them to produce enough food we needed. Youth and women should should be encourage to engage in farming too” She said.
In his response,the Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, Abubaker Kyari said Nigeria is heavily under-mechanized in terms of Agriculture, therefore must adopt technology and innovation to achieve food security.
“Today, agriculture is heavily dependent on technology and innovation. Nigeria still used Hoe and cutlass for agriculture. Nigeria need to move forward if at all to achieve food security. Our population is growing everyday, we need to look into all innovative ideas on how to do modern agriculture to increase food production” he said.
The Minister also told the Senate that the Ministry is working with other sister Ministries and MDAs like the Water Resources Ministry, who are the custodians of all irrigation lands to achieve food security.