A Bill which seeks to establish a Food Reserve Agency in the country was passed for a second reading by the Senate on Tuesday.
The Bill which was sponsored by Senator Abdullahi Adamu (Nasarawa West), had one of its main objectives to ensure food security for Nigeria to prevent any form of emergency food crises in the future.
The lawmaker stated that the Food Reserve Agency would be responsible for storing food grains and other food commodities for strategic purposes.
“Agriculture plays a pivotal role in the development and growth of every nation. Any country seeking to diversify its economy, alleviate poverty, create jobs and ensure food security should prioritize agriculture.
“Nigeria recognizing the important role Agriculture plays has made efforts to place the sector at the fore by introducing different intervention programmes and policies backed by enabling laws.
“A further step to be taken to ensure food security in our country at all times is to formulate enabling laws that will address food insecurity,” Adamu said.
The lawmaker added, “The recent mandate of the President during the COVID-19 pandemic to distribute 70,000 metric tonnes of grains from the Grains Reserves shows clearly how important it is for a country to have a Food Reserve Agency.”
“With the existence of the Agency, emergency food crises will be taken care of especially in the period of a pandemic.
“There will also be a reduction in post-harvest losses as silos, warehouses, equipment, ancillary facilities and other suitable storage facilities will be installed and maintained.
“With the Agency in place, Nigeria will be taking the right step in the right direction as replicated in other African countries such as Zambia and Tanzania.”
The Senators approved that the Bill be read a second time after a voice vote by the Senate President, Senator Ahmad Lawan.