Govt seeks collaboration on food security

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Dayo Ojerinde

The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Idowu Olusola,  has advocated partnership among stakeholders in the Agriculture sector, saying this will contribute to making substantial and positive changes in the food system.

Olusola, at the UN Food System Dialogue webinar for journalists on Tuesday, identified food systems as touching every aspect of human existence, describing the systems as having the power to bring people together as families, communities and nations.

She said when food systems fail, the resulting disorder threatens education, health and economy, as well as human rights, peace and security.

The Food System Dialogue according to her, is expected to improve food and nutrition security in Nigeria, reduce hunger and the prevalence of malnutrition.

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“It is also to create a more inclusive healthier food system, encourage collaborative approach towards building a food system in Nigeria and hence the achievement of the SDGs,” she said.

She explained that the Federal Government, being a member of the United Nations, was working with multiple stakeholders in an effort to ensure that the food systems were more sustainable, inclusive and resilient.

The Executive Director, Community Action for Food Security, Mr Azeez Salawu, called on governments and development partners to help drive action that would transform Nigeria’s food systems for the well-being of the populace.

Salawu, made the call while speaking on the topic, titled, ‘Adaptive Approaches for Food Systems Sustainability in Nigeria.’

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He said the objective of the meeting was to spark critical discussion, inspire, engage, network, connect and form a formidable partnership that would be based on investing in food security and rural development leading to the achievement SDGs.

He, therefore, urged the federal and state governments as well as development partners to help drive action through more strategic programmes that have a direct impact on small scale farmers, youth and women in agriculture.

The director further advocated robust extension services and an easy access market across the agricultural value chain.

Salawu explained that such action would go a long way in addressing the serious deterioration of food production systems currently affecting the country.

“As we commence the decade of action in the attainment of the 2030 SDGs, we call on leaders to find a pathway for more participation of young people.

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“The FSSD is coming at the right time as we are also faced with a pandemic that has made it even worst for our small-scale farmers to operate in their respective communities thereby reducing their profits and also affecting the economy,” he said.

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