Adesina who spoke to newsmen after he declared open, this year’s National Agricultural Show at Tudun Wada, outside Keffi in Nasarawa State, last week, was asked by Daily Trust whether the federal government was comfortable with states that failed to utilize various funds sent to them by the federal government to assist farmers displaced by the floods of 2012.
Adesina said he knew that it takes long for people to recover from any shock, and rather spoke on the food supply his ministry carried out, avoiding comments on the funds also sent to the states.
The minister, who was flanked by Governor Umaru Tanko Al-Makura of Nasarawa State, said: “When the floods happen last year, the president deployed a lot of resources; the governors, the local governments, everybody worked very hard to make sure that those that were affected got access to food.
“From my ministry, we deployed 40,000 metric tones of food across the country, 100 percent was delivered. I know that recovering from shock always take a long time. A number of them are still trying to recover. But here we are; one year ago everybody was saying Nigeria was going to have farming, food crisis. We don’t have famine. And it wasn’t manner coming from heaven; it was food produced by Nigerians. Nigerians are resilience. They went back; we gave them seeds and fertilizers. These same farmers that were affected produced a lot of food.
“So I think it is a salute to the resilience of Nigerian farmers. And I think as a government we will continue to support and do more for them,” the minister said.
During the opening ceremony, Senator Abdullahi Adamu (PDP, Nasarawa-West), who is also the chairman of the Board of Trustees of the National Agricultural Foundation of Nigeria (NAFN), organizers of the show, lamented the severe hardship faced by farmers last year because of floods.
“Millions of our peasant farmers bore the brunt of the floods that ravaged various parts of the country last year. Thousands of them lost everything they had and were in addition rendered homeless. The floods swept away their homes and destroyed nearly one million hectares of farmland,” Senator Adamu said.
But the senator commended President Goodluck Jonathan for being promt in raising assistance to the farmers who were displaced by the floods.