The Minister of State of Agriculture and Food Security, Aliyu Abdullahi, has advocated for the National Agriculture Data Centre to attract investors to enhance food and nutrition security in Nigeria.
Abdullahi gave this indication during the meeting with the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) delegation led by the Director, Office of Emergency & Resilience, Rein Paulsen in Abuja.
The minister in a statement signed by the Chief Information Officer, Eremah Anthonia, on Thursday, said substantial data covering farms and farmers will enable the ministry to keep track of development, and challenges faced in the sector.
He said, “Nigeria has 70 per cent of arable land, and yet some number of people are not food secured. This is worrisome.
“The data governing system would attract and encourage investors, also help to define farm types and enable the Ministry to know where farms exist.
The Minister harped on the need to actualize the National Agricultural Data in Nigeria in the next two years and pointed out that the present administration was fully committed to making sure that Nigeria was food-secured which was the reason for bringing food security to the front burner.
Abdullahi also emphasized that the ministry had already started taking action to create the enabling environment to make investors’ entry easier with the focus on easing their businesses.
He pointed out that by the time investors come in, it would enhance self-sufficiency, create job opportunities, and inclusiveness of youths and women, amongst others
In his remarks, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Dr. Ernest Umakhihe reiterated FAO’s support in achieving the ministry’s mandate while urging the FAO to revisit the quarterly meetings usually held in the ministry to bring the issues again to the front burner.