A former national organising secretary of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator Osita Izunaso, has lauded the efforts of President Muhammadu Buhari in the agricultural sector.
He particularly praised the government for its support for rice farmers through the Anchor Borrowers Scheme, saying the gesture is helping Nigeria save about $3.5billion as annual import bill for the commodity.
Speaking in Abuja at the weekend, the APC chieftain stated that the numerous policies and programmes in the sector have ensured that the country achieves self-sufficiency in food supply.
According to Izunaso, the achievements, which he listed as numerous have helped Nigeria save a lot of scarce foreign exchange which would have gone into food importation.
“I am particularly delighted that the current APC-led administration has done so remarkably well in the agricultural sector and the achievements are there for people to see,” he said.
Izunaso also carpeted past governments for not showing enough passion and zeal for the development and growth of the sector the way the Buhari administration has done.
“I am saddened by the fact that the country would have recorded giant strides in the sector if past governments had shown the needed passion and zeal that the current government has shown,” he said.
Apart from the conservation of foreign currency, he listed some of the strides that have been recorded in the sector to include employment generation and expansion of local capacity in the agricultural value chain.
“What is also of great joy to me is that youths in the country have come to see the potentials in agriculture as a veritable avenue for employment generation.
“Many of them (the youths), who hitherto consider the sector as exclusively for the rural dwellers have found it worth the while to migrate to the rural areas to engage in farming,” he said.