Food shortage problem will end in 2 yrs —Ogbeh

MINISTER of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh, has assured Nigerians that food shortage problem in the country will be over in two years.

The minister said this when he received in audience the governor of Anambra State, Chief Willie Obiano, in his office in Abuja.

Chief Ogbeh commended the commitment of the governor in the agricultural sector and promised to support the state in the ministry’s programmes.

He said the  ministry would be willing to help the state in fingerling production and other areas of the sector to boost food production in the country.

The minister advised the governor on the use of NPK 15-15 fertiliser, which according to him, destroyed the soil.

He also encouraged the state to consider the use of lemon grass to tackle the erosion problems in the state.

Chief Ogbeh explained that the ministry was considering the need to add 10 per cent soya beans into cassava to enrich it with more protein for more nourishment for the children.

He added that about 15,000 broken-down tractors out of the 30,000 available in the country would be rehabilitated to support farmers in Nigeria.

The minister, who commended Anambra State for improving its rice production capacity from 80,000 metric tons to 210,000 metric tons, disclosed that the ministry had succeeded in reclaiming all the universities of agriculture.

He noted that the ministry had commenced the process of training 100,000 extension workers up to the local government areas and stated government’s determination to take off the wandering cows out of the streets of the country in 18 months.

Earlier in his remarks, Governor Obiano said  Anambra State had been doing well in commercial agriculture, saying the state spent almost N150 million last year to boost seedlings.

The governor stated that the state had commenced the exportation of Ugwu and Bitter leaves to the United Kingdom, saying about N20 million was used for the training of farmers on packaging of produce for exportation.