The Vice President, Sen. Kashim Shettima as assured the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture of Federal Government’s partnership towards ensuring food security in the country.
Sen. Kashim Shettima gave the assurance today at the Presidential Villa, Abuja when he received in audience the IITA delegation led by the Director-General and Regional Director for Africa, Simeon Ehui.
He told the delegation that the President Bola Ahmed Tinubu administration will give all the necessary support and assistance to ensure food security and enhance agricultural practice that would produce enough food for the citizenry.
According to the Vice President, “there has to be a paradigm shift. Our agricultural output is low as compared to our size of population and even the unfriendly environmental factors. So, this is a time of change and I want to give you the guarantee that my boss is with you and he will solidly support you to execute your mandate.
Continuing, “my boss, President Bola Tinubu is a man of courage and conviction and he has determined to reposition the nation more than ever before.”
While commending the IITA team for the many successes they have recorded in the agriculture sector in the West African region, Vice President Shettima praised IITA for doing well in the production of certain agricultural produce such as “cassava, yam, soya beans.
He stated further that IITA has an iconic presence in Nigeria, in Ibadan and West Africa and as such reasoned that the country must maximize the benefits which the institution can bring to bear on the agriculture sector in the country.
According to him, “Your own mantra is about the increase in agricultural yield and what tools can be used to improve such yield; ensure seed quality and availability, sound agricultural practices, fertilizer, and most importantly market accessibility”
“These are not rocket science, these are real and of course, if we can have very sound and environmentally friendly irrigation mechanism that will enhance our farm outputs, we can achieve our objectives”
Vice President Sen. Kashim Shettima lauded the institution for its reputation and international best practices, noting that the “Federal Government can effortlessly do business with you. So, I want to give you my candid assurance that by my training, by my inclination as an agricultural economist and as a banker by profession, we can definitely engage with you.”
Earlier, the Director-General, Simeon Ehui, thanked the Federal Government for the support to IITA over the years, disclosing that it has expanded across many states in the country. He expressed the readiness of IITA to partner with the Tinubu administration, adding that so much needs to be done in Nigeria.