The World Bank has identified seven states in Nigeria’s Northwest and Northeast regions as potential hotspots for an impending food crisis.
This alarming prediction stems from heightened insecurity and armed conflicts, causing a decline in living standards across these regions.
Fears of attacks and kidnappings have left some states unable to access farmlands, particularly in the eastern part, where bandit activities have disrupted farming activities.
Borno, Adamawa, Kaduna, Katsina, Yobe, Sokoto, and Zamfara states are the ones deemed most susceptible, according to the World Bank’s latest Food Security report.
The report further anticipates that West and Central Africa will remain minimally food insecure until May 2024, with Nigeria’s far north facing crisis food security levels due to persistent insecurity and armed conflict.
Meanwhile, Nigeria has grappled with rising food inflation for 11 consecutive months, reaching a new high in December 2023, as reported by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
The economic hardship caused by food inflation, naira depreciation, and escalating insecurity has led to protests in Kano, Niger, Lokoja, and Lagos states.
Protesters express their concerns over the soaring cost of essential commodities, demanding urgent government intervention.
Amidst the unrest, President Bola Tinubu has directed the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security to release 42,000 metric tonnes of grains, including maize, millet, and garri.
Additionally, the Rice Millers Association of Nigeria has committed to releasing over 60,000 metric tonnes of rice.
These immediate measures, announced by the Minister of Information and Orientation, Muhammad Idris, aim to alleviate the hardships faced by Nigerians grappling with high food prices.
President Tinubu emphasized the need for further investment in farming processes to boost production and fully exploit the country’s food potentials.
The effectiveness of these measures in mitigating the high cost of living remains uncertain.
The situation calls for urgent attention as Nigerians from various sectors and regions voice their grievances against the economic challenges plaguing the nation.
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