Abiodun OBA

The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, HURIWA, has described the claim by the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Mohammed Abubakar as a “mere political imagination.”

The minister was reported to have said his ministry’s strategic policies and programmes including Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) 2017-2020 of the current administration, have seen agriculture as the alternative to oil for meaningful diversification of the economy.

Abubakar, who stated this in Abuja while observing this year’s World Food Day, themed, ‘Our Actions Are Our Future. Better Production, Better Nutrition, A Better Environment And A Better Life,’ noted that investment in agriculture can guarantee food security with the potential to be a major contributor to job creation and save foreign exchange required for food imports.

He had said: “Our various empowerment initiatives along production, processing and marketing of agricultural commodities, we have lifted a total of 4,205,576 Nigerians out of poverty in the last two years, this is going to continue as part of Mr. President’s promise to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty within the next 10 years. In the area of capacity-building, the minister maintained that a total of 2,205,576 farmers/youths/women were trained and empowered on different agricultural value chains.”

In a statement by its Coordinator, HURIWA said the minister was sounding sycophantic to please his political master and avoid the fate that befell his predecessor recently dismissed by President Muhammadu Buhari.

According to HURIWA: “The claims by the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Mohammad Mahmood Abubakar that the federal government has lifted 4,205,576 Nigerians out of poverty in the last two years through its various agricultural policies, is a comprehensive assault to honesty and amounts to the worship of the goddess of falsehood.

“ It is the mere political figment of imagination of the minister of AGRICULTURE who is sounding sycophantic to please his political master and avoid the fate that befell his predecessor recently dismissed by President Muhammadu Buhari.

“Publish the names of the citizens and their exact locations who he claimed to have lifted out of poverty just as the Rights group said the Minister even contradicted himself when in that same speech he acknowledged the devastating impacts to farming productivity by the heightened state of insecurity in the Country.”

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