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COVID-19 :  Don urges FG, States  to subsidise farm inputs to avert food shortage

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Prof. Micheal Uguru, Department of Crop Science, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, has urged the Federal and State Governments to subsidise farm inputs such as fertiliser and crop seedlings for farmers to avert food shortage.

Uguru told News Agency of Nigeria in Nsukka on Tuesday that farmers should be given adequate support during the farming season as the country might experience food shortage next year because of the COVID-19 lockdown.

“As a result of lockdown caused by coronavirus, I urge the government to galvanise and support farmers by subsidising farm inputs like fertiliser, crop seedlings to boost food production.

“As the health workers, security agencies and media are given pass to move and do their work, farmers should also be given pass to go to their farms.

“Farmers are important in any country because no matter your position in the society you must eat to sustain your life,” he said.

The Don, said it was because the government knew the importance of food in the survival of any human being that when markets were closed as part of measures to control the spread of coronavirus, food section in the market were not closed.

” I am suggesting that a bag of fertiliser being sold in the open market for between N9,000 and N11,000 should be subsidised to N5, 000 so that majority of farmers will have access to it.

“All developed countries of the world first achieved food security before becoming economic giants they are today, ” he said.

The Professor of Plant Breeding advised farmers to be more dedicated to their farms so as to achieve bumper harvest.

“Farmers should know that the quality of farm inputs and serious attention given to it is what translate to bumper harvest.

”If you decide to be lazy when others are giving serious attention to their farms, don’t expect bumper harvest because,it is what you sow that you will reap,” Uguru said

Edited By: Modupe Adeloye/Felix Ajide (NAN)