OBINNA EZUGWU

Nigeria’s president, Muhammadu Buhari has announced the release of 30,000 tons of maize from the national reserves, to animal feed producers to ease high cost of poultry production in the country.

The federal government’s border closure had affected maize importation into the country, while the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in July directed all authorized forex dealers to stop processing Form More for maize importation in bid to increase local production.

The moves led to rapid shortage of maize however, causing massive spike in price of the commodity, even as price of poultry feed, mostly produced from maize, soared.

The president said the decision to release the maize tonnes is to help mitigate the rising cost.

“To ease the current high cost of poultry production, I have approved the release of 30,000 tons of maize from the national reserves, to animal feed producers,Buhari said in a statement via his twitter handle, @MBuhari on Thursday.

“We are very mindful of the challenge of high food prices, at a time when the economy is already in a slowdown caused by the global coronavirus situation, and are doing everything in our power to bring down the prices of food items across the country.

“Let me assure Nigerians that this situation of spiraling food prices will be a transient one.

“We are also engaging with food producers associations and groups to tackle the issue of exploitative behaviour by middlemen and other actors, which is one of the factors responsible for the high food prices being experienced.”