Ondo State Governor, Lucky Orimisan Ayedatiwa in a proactive move to tackle escalating food prices and ensure food security, has commenced the distribution of maize and other commodities to farmers across the state. The initiative, flagged off on Monday in Akure, aims to support poultry, piggery, and fishery farmers in all 18 local government areas of the state.

Governor Ayedatiwa emphasized the urgency of addressing the country’s food security challenges with about 40 trailers of grains provided by the federal government. He highlighted the establishment of a committee on Agriculture and Food Security to implement immediate measures in response to the crisis.

“Today’s programme is the first among the activities and initiatives lined up to make our state zero tolerant to food insecurity accompanied by massive modern agricultural interventions needed to catapult us to an enviable position in the comity of states.

“The effects of painful but necessary subsidy removal on petrol had compounded the food security situation in Ondo State and indeed Nigeria. Rising inflation on food items and others have made life somewhat unbearable to the people. As a government, we must check this ugly trend and make sure that food is not just available, but affordable to the generality of the people,” Governor Ayedatiwa said.

Governor Ayedatiwa also highlighted the importance of making food both available and affordable to the populace, particularly in the face of rising inflation exacerbated by subsidy removal on petrol. He outlined infrastructure projects to improve market access and empower smallholder farmers, with a focus on women and youth.

Acknowledging Ondo State’s significant contribution to the nation’s agricultural sector, particularly in tomato supply, Governor Ayedatiwa announced plans for further distribution of various food commodities in the future. He expressed gratitude to the federal government, led by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, for approving the distribution of grains and other essential commodities across the country.

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Chairman of the Committee on Agriculture and Food Security, Rotimi Wemimo Akinsola, commended the governor’s commitment to the welfare of the people and urged farmers to effectively utilize the distributed agricultural commodities to contribute to lower food prices. He envisioned Ondo State becoming a leading agricultural hub and pledged to address farmers’ challenges promptly.

The event also featured the presentation of an award to Governor Ayedatiwa by the Ondo State Agricultural Commodities Association (OSACA), recognizing his efforts in advancing agriculture and food security in the state.

By prioritizing the distribution of essential agricultural inputs, the governor demonstrates a proactive approach to addressing the pressing issue of escalating food prices and ensuring food security. This initiative not only provides immediate support to poultry, piggery, and fishery farmers but also lays the foundation for sustainable agricultural practices that can bolster food production and availability in the long term.

The establishment of a committee on Agriculture and Food Security underscores the government’s commitment to implementing timely measures to tackle food insecurity. By recognising the urgency of the situation and taking concrete steps to address it, Governor Ayedatiwa signals his administration’s responsiveness to the needs of the people and willingness to confront challenges head-on.

By investing in market access and capacity-building programmes, the government aims to create an enabling environment for farmers to thrive, thereby contributing to poverty reduction and economic growth in the state. This demonstrates a long-term vision for agricultural development and signals continuity in addressing food security challenges.