By Chijioke Okoronkwo
Abuja, Nov. 19, 2020 The National Economic Council (NEC) has expressed concern over the current food prices and called for urgent measures to address the trend.
Laolu Akande, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Office of the Vice President, in a statement, said the council expressed this view at a virtual meeting on Thursday at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
He said that NEC received briefing on current trend in food prices and the need for urgent remedial measures from Dr Andrew Kwasari, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Agriculture.
“Council received the presentation on the above subject matter with current food price situation analysis showing that:
“Food prices have changed between September and November involving commodities in Lagos and a few randomly selected states.
“The hike in prices is due to the following factors
“Delay in going out to farm, which translates to delay in harvesting courtesy of COVID19 pandemic
“ EndSARS protest stalled food transportation and delivery and in some instances destroyed food stores
“Banditry in the northwest effectively preventing farmers from harvesting fields cultivated
“Farmers/herders conflict destroyed farm produce in some states
“ Increased cost of transportation.’’
The council resolved that states and Federal Government should adopt urgent measures including social protection schemes to deal with the situation.
It also decided that the Federal Government would pursue the implementation of its Economic Sustainability Agric plan and others to positively improve the situation in the sector.