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Border Closure: Nigerian rice farmers are struggling to feed a rice-hungry nation 

Three factors are constraining Nigerian rice farmers from meeting their full potentials in terms of producing enough to meet growing the demand.  

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NIRSAL, The National Information Technology Development Agency has kick-started a job and wealth creation programme where 130 farmers will each receiv, e seed funding of N100,000Border Closure: Nigerian rice farmers are struggling to feed a rice-hungry nation. CBN to give Niger Delta rice farmers single-digit loan 

Three factors are constraining Nigerian rice farmers from meeting their full potentials in terms of producing enough to meet growing demand.

Recent findings by Reuters disclosed that the constraining factors include lack of machinery and adequate irrigation, lack of adequate finance to procure fertilisers, and limited access to manual labour.

Border Closure: Nigerian rice farmers are struggling to feed a rice-hungry nation 

Many rice farmers across the country are facing these same challenges. A female rice farmer who was interviewed at work, said, “We work until we get exhausted, manually we get exhausted.” This is a major problem for Nigeria and its grand plan to locally produce enough rice to feed its citizens.

Increasing local production of rice is one of the many promises President Buhari made to Nigerians when he was campaigning to become the country’s President in 2015. Although he has taken steps towards fulfilling this promise, there are still concerns about whether rice farmers in the country have the capacity to meet demands.

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In August 2019, the Nigerian government implemented a policy that shut down the country’s land borders. The move was intended to serve two purposes – fight smuggling and invigorate local production of essential food items such as rice and poultry products.

[READ MORE: Border closure weighing on operations of FMCGs)

President Buhari’s media aide, Garba Shehu, was quoted as saying that border closure helped push Nigeria’s rice production to 9.2 million tonnes last year. But Gro Intelligence, an agricultural data specialist, said the country’s total output in 2019 was 4.9 million tonnes which is below the country’s annual rice consumption of 7 million tonnes.

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In the meantime, there is a projection that Nigeria will import more rice in 2020 due to the high cost of growing the commodity locally.

“The U.S. Department of Agriculture, meanwhile, expects Nigeria’s 2020 rice imports to rise 9% to 2.4 million tonnes, in part due to the high cost of unprocessed Nigerian paddy rice and elevated operating costs at mills.”

Emmanuel is a professional writer and business journalist, with interests covering Banking & Finance, Mergers and Acquisitions, Corporate Profiles, Brand Communication, Fintech, and MSMEs. He initially joined Nairametrics as an all-round Business Analyst, but later began focusing on and covering the financial services sector. He has also held various leadership roles, including Senior Editor, QAQC Lead, and Deputy Managing Editor. Emmanuel holds an M.Sc in International Relations from the University of Ibadan, graduating with Distinction. He also graduated with a Second Class Honours (Upper Division) from the Department of Philosophy & Logic, University of Ibadan. If you have a scoop for him, you may contact him via his email- [email protected] You may also contact him through various social media platforms, preferably LinkedIn and Twitter.

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Coronavirus

COVID-19 Update in Nigeria

On the 22nd of October 2020, 138 new confirmed cases and 2 deaths were recorded in Nigeria

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The spread of novel Corona Virus Disease (COVID-19) in Nigeria continues to record significant increases as the latest statistics provided by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control reveal Nigeria now has 61,805 confirmed cases.

On the 22nd of October 2020, 138 new confirmed cases and 2 deaths were recorded in Nigeria, having carried out a total daily test of 4,648 samples across the country.

To date, 61,805 cases have been confirmed, 56,985 cases have been discharged and 1,127 deaths have been recorded in 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory. A total of 595,283 tests have been carried out as of October 22nd, 2020 compared to 590,635 tests a day earlier.

COVID-19 Case Updates- 22nd October 2020,

  • Total Number of Cases – 61,805
  • Total Number Discharged – 56,985
  • Total Deaths – 1,1127
  • Total Tests Carried out – 595,283

According to the NCDC, the 138 new cases were reported from 13 states – Katsina (44), Lagos (35), Kwara (15), Kaduna (13), Plateau (7), Imo (6), Adamawa (5) Rivers (4), Yobe (3), Ogun (2), Oyo (2), Osun (1), FCT (1).

Meanwhile, the latest numbers bring Lagos state total confirmed cases to 20,768, followed by Abuja (5,944), Plateau (3,594), Oyo (3,423), Rivers (2,746), Edo (2,648), Kaduna (2,585), Ogun (1,989), Delta (1,812), Kano (1,741), Ondo (1,659), Enugu (1,314),  Kwara (1,065), Ebonyi (1,049), Katsina (948), Osun (919), Abia (898), Gombe (883).  Borno (745), and Bauchi (710).

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Imo State has recorded 613 cases, Benue (484), Nasarawa (478), Bayelsa (403),  Ekiti (329), Jigawa (325), Akwa Ibom (295), Anambra (277), Niger (274), Adamawa (257), Sokoto (162), Taraba (122), Kebbi (93), Cross River (87), Yobe (82), Zamfara (79), while Kogi state has recorded 5 cases only.

READ ALSO: COVID-19: Western diplomats warn of disease explosion, poor handling by government

Lock Down and Curfew

In a move to combat the spread of the pandemic disease, President Muhammadu Buhari directed the cessation of all movements in Lagos and the FCT for an initial period of 14 days, which took effect from 11 pm on Monday, 30th March 2020.

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The movement restriction, which was extended by another two-weeks period, has been partially put on hold with some businesses commencing operations from May 4. On April 27th, 2020, Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari declared an overnight curfew from 8 pm to 6 am across the country, as part of new measures to contain the spread of the COVID-19. This comes along with the phased and gradual easing of lockdown measures in FCT, Lagos, and Ogun States, which took effect from Saturday, 2nd May 2020, at 9 am.

On Monday, 29th June 2020 the federal government extended the second phase of the eased lockdown by 4 weeks and approved interstate movement outside curfew hours with effect from July 1, 2020. Also, on Monday 27th July 2020, the federal government extended the second phase of eased lockdown by an additional one week.

On Thursday, 6th August 2020 the federal government through the secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) and Chairman of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 announced the extension of the second phase of eased lockdown by another four (4) weeks.

READ ALSO: Bill Gates says Trump’s WHO funding suspension is dangerous

 

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Economy & Politics

Breaking: Senatorial, State House of Assembly bye-elections postponed – INEC

Senatorial and State House of Assembly bye-elections slated to hold on October 31 in 11 states have been postponed by INEC.

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Nigeria's election delay

The 6 Senatorial and 9 State House of Assembly bye-elections slated to hold on October 31 in 11 states of the Federation has been postponed by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). The vacancies were as a result of death and resignation of previous members.

According to the statement issued by its National Commissioner & Chairman, Information and Voter Education, Festus Okoye Esq., INEC said the decision was taken after meeting with the 37 Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) on Thursday.

Though the commission did not categorically state the reason for the postponement, feelers are that it may not be unconnected with the raging #EndSARS protests across the nation.

 

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Details shortly…

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ENDSARS

#EndSARS: President Buhari issues stern warning to hoodlums

The President has issued a warning to hoodlums who have hijacked the #EndSARS protest to promote unrest.

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You are working for Nigeria, not for personal interests, Buhari warns MDAs, This is how much the Federal Government borrowed from Pension Funds in 2019, Increased productivity and higher employment rate required for inclusive growth - IFC , Of visions, plan and budget,FG to review petrol price in April, President Buhari holds National Security Council Meeting with IGP, Defence Minister, VP, and others, President Buhari issues stern warning to hoodlums in his state of the Nation address to Nigerians

President Buhari, in his state of the Nation address to Nigerians this evening has warned hoodlums and the conflict entrepreneurs who have hijacked the #EndSARS protest to promote unrest.

The President explained that the choice to demonstrate peacefully is a fundamental right of citizens as enshrined in Section 40 of the Constitution and other enactments.

“I must warn those who have hijacked and misdirected the initial, genuine and well-intended protest of some of our youths in parts of the country, against the excesses of some members of the now-disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS),” he said.

President Muhammad Buhari frowned against the desperate and inhumane actions of mobsters, arsonists and hoodlums which has led to the loss of human lives, sexual violence, attacks on correctional facilities, as well as public and private properties which were completely destroyed or vandalized.

(READ MORE:#EndSARS: Police officers who participated in abuse of citizens must be fished out – Governors’ Forum)

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He explained that these bad actions will not be tolerated, as it is not in line with the legitimate expression of grievance of the youth of the country. He reiterated that the Government shall continue to ensure that liberty and freedom, as well as the fundamental rights of all citizens, are protected.

What you should know from the President’s State of the Nation address

The President reiterated that the government has the obligation to protect lives and properties, and ensure that the citizens go about their daily businesses freely and protected from acts of violence.

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However, he appealed to protesters to note and take advantage of the various well-thought-out initiatives of this administration designed to make their lives better and more meaningful, and resist the temptation of being used by some subversive elements to cause chaos with the aim of truncating our nascent democracy.

The President, however, warned the youth that doing otherwise will amount to undermining national security as well as law and order, which under no circumstances will be tolerated.

President Buhari thus called on the youths to discontinue the street protests and constructively engage the government in finding solutions, as their voices have been heard loud and clear.

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