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FGN releases 102,000 metric tons of food amid worsening economic crisis

As part of efforts to ameliorate the worsening food crisis in the country, President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Bola Tinubu has ordered the immediate release of over 102,000 metric tons of various grains from the Strategic Reserve and the Rice Millers Association of Nigeria.

The announcement came after mounting protests in Minna, Kano, and Ondo, where aggrieved citizens vented their frustration over the spiraling cost of living.

Speaking to State House Correspondents after the culmination of three high-level meetings of the Special Presidential Committee on Emergency Food Intervention, Minister of Information and National Orientation, Mohammed Idris, unveiled the government’s urgent response to the crisis.

Idris stated, “The Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security has been directed to release about 42,000 metric tons of maize, millet, Garri, and other commodities from their strategic reserve immediately. Additionally, discussions with the Rice Millers Association have secured commitments to unlock approximately 60,000 metric tons of rice from their stores.”

Acknowledging potential shortages, Idris indicated that the administration would consider importing essential supplies to address any gaps arising from the initial release of food items.

He emphasized the objective of the measures, asserting, “Our aim is to substantially reduce the cost of these food items. These actions will be implemented immediately.”

Furthermore, the government revealed plans to inject capital into dry season farming to bolster year-round food production, offering hope for sustained agricultural output.

Idris underscored the government’s resolve to address food hoarding, condemning practices that exacerbate the crisis. He warned, “The government will not hesitate to take decisive action against those who withhold essential commodities from the market, jeopardizing the welfare of our nation.”

Idris confirmed that the Rice Millers Association of Nigeria has also committed to releasing about 60,000 metric tons of rice to the markets.

“They’ve told us that they can guarantee about 60,000 metric tons of rice. They will make that available to Nigerians; to bring out to the market to make food available.”

As protests flared anew in Kano State over exorbitant food prices, the nation confronts a critical juncture, grappling with the profound socioeconomic challenges confronting its populace. The government’s swift response reflects a commitment to mitigate immediate hardships while charting a course toward long-term food security.

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