The Lagos State government has reiterated its commitment to ensuring food security and building infrastructure that would sustain Food Systems.
Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu stated this in Ikeja at the opening of a two day South-West Zonal Sensitization Workshop on the “Implementation of the UN Food Systems Transformation Pathways in Nigeria 2022,”
The Governor who also restated his administration’s commitment to Food sustainability, announced that Lagosians consume about four point five billion naira worth of food daily.
Jointly organised by the Lagos State Ministry of Agriculture and the Federal Ministry of Budget and National Planning, the Sensitization Workshop, is being attended by representatives from Oyo, Ogun, Ondo, Osun and Ekiti, with Lagos as a coordinating state for the Southwest geo- political zone.
Commending the Federal Government for the National Pathway for Sustainable Food Systems with actions that would run from 2021-2030, Governor Sanwo-Olu who listed his administration’s efforts to achieve food security under the Lagos five year Agricultural Roadmap 2021-2025 stated that Infrastructure such as the Lekki Deep Sea Port, the Lagos Free Zone, Regional Road currently under construction, as well as the railway projects are geared towards boosting the economy.
Represented by the State Commissioner for Budget and Economic Planning, Mr Sam Egube, Governor Sanwo-Olu noted that with coordinated efforts, the South-West Zone has what it takes to stimulate national economic growth, thereby dictating the trade outcomes in the African continent.
“We believe that there’s a lot of resources in the South-West, we have the largest food markets, the biggest commercial and industrial bases in Africa are in the South-West, we believe that if we coordinate very intelligently and pull our resources together in the South-West, we will produce an outcome that Nigeria will indeed be proud of”.
“I assure you that the Lagos State Government is fully committed to achieving a food secured Lagos and Nigeria through partnership with all national and sub-national entities as well as private sector and international technical and donor organisations. The Governor said.
The National Convener and Permanent Secretary, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Olusola Idowu explained that the workshop was being held in all the six geopolitical zones concurrently from July 4 to 8, focusing on three low hanging fruit programmes and 80 priority actions.
She applauded the role of the private sector in food systems and appealed to all to ensure that the implementation stage is truly for implementation to positively impact the lives of all Nigerians.
“Please, I make this passionate appeal that we all ensure that this implementation stage is truly for implementation, wherein, we do less talk and more action so that we can impact lives of Nigerians,” she said.
While welcoming participants, the Lagos State Commissioner for Agriculture, Ms Abisola Olusanya noted that improving Food systems may help solve a number of issues common to most developing countries such as food insecurity, unemployment and other challenges.
Ms Olusanya stressed that Lagos had already taken the bull by the horn in guaranteeing food security for people with different agricultural and food value chains under the State Agricultural and Food Systems Road map.
In a remark, the United Nations resident coordinator to Nigeria, Matthias Schmale, represented by the UN resident in Lagos, Mr Isiaka Ibrahim, described the way Nigeria has been coordinating Food Systems as commendable and reiterated the UN’s commitment to support the Country in achieving the set goals.