President Muhammadu Buhari has lamented that the devastating floods sweeping across some states in Nigeria have caused setbacks to the food production efforts of his government.
In a message of sympathy to the people of Kebbi State on the flood disasters that destroyed farmlands and engendered considerable losses of crops and homes, Buhari said: “this sad news couldn’t have come at a worse time for this administration because of the role of Kebbi State farmers in supporting the government’s initiative to promote local rice production as part of efforts to reduce Nigeria’s dependence on importation of the commodity.
“This flood disaster represents a setback for the efforts to boost local rice production in the country, for which Kebbi State is playing a leading role.”
President Buhari said he was “highly touched by the sheer scale of the losses suffered by our hard working farmers in Kebbi State.”
He said that apart from creating job opportunities and decent incomes for the farmers, agriculture plays a key role in the economy of any country.
“When our farmers are hit by these kinds of large scale losses on account of natural disasters, the government should be genuinely concerned, especially as this unfortunate event occurred at a critical time when my administration is pursuing a policy to restore the primacy of agriculture in our national life.”
President Buhari advised the affected farmers not to despair, assuring them that they will not be forgotten by the federal government. He commended the state government led by Senator Abubakar Bagudu for the swift measures put into action to alleviate the hardship of the victims and equally directed emergency federal aid in support.