The chairman of the Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria (RIFAN), Adamawa state chapter, Dr Stephen Maduwa has said that food sufficiency in the northeast can no longer be guaranteed following the massive looting of their stores and warehouses in Yola the Adamawa state capital.
Maduwa who spoke to newsmen in the wake of the looting spree said tractors, seedlings, fertilizers and other farm implements meant to be distributed to farmers for the dry season farming have all been carted away by looters.
He is worried that the trend will adversely affects the federal government’s Anchor Borrowers programmes targeted at supporting farmers to ensure food sufficiency in the country.
Youths in Yola, the Adamawa state capitals had Sunday night visited the warehouses of all the commodities associations in the state and carted away all valuables including doors, windows and roofs in their looting spree.
” This is no longer the #EndSARS agitation by our youths. Hoodlums have taken over everything. This may lead o hunger in the country because of the looting of our warehouses.
” We have been supporting the federal government’s Anchor Borrowers programme to support farmers but our warehouses were looted, tractors, fertilizers, seedling and so many farming implements carted away by the looters. All the commodity associations in Adamawa state have suffered and it is very unfortunate.” He said.
Dr Maduwa said he is worried that farmers and the associations may have challenges in repaying their loans to the Central Bank of Nigeria and is therefore calling on President Muhmadu Buhari and the Central Bank governor, Godwin Emefiele to act swiftly.
” I’m calling on the president of the federal republic of Nigeria and the Central Bank governor to please set up a high powered delegation to come and investigate and also ascertain the damage done to all the commodity associations.
” This inputs and implements are not given to us free, it is a loan and we are not federal government agencies. So we want them to act so that we can know better how to repay the input suppliers and the loan itself. Because if this action is not taken it will lead to food shortage in the country,” he added.
The RIFAN chairman is worried that the country is going through several security challenges, the COVID-19 pandemic and now the sad incidents where citizens have taken into looting government and private businesses.
” The president have to be up and doing to curtail this incidences if not something funny can happen to this country,” Maduwa stressed.
He laments the looming food shortage facing the country because of the act of some miscreants who believe it was their right to loot, while calling on the youths to embrace peace and work towards developing the country and not destroying it.
” The president have spoken, the youths have also made their points clear, but I think it is time we give peace a chance in this country. The national assembly are also working on the demands of the youths, let’s give them some time and stop destroying what the government have spend so much to built,” he added.