The Federal Government yesterday warned of an imminent food crisis if quelea birds, locusts and grasshoppers gathering in Niger Republic are allowed entry into the country.
Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh gave the warning during an emergency meeting with state commissioners of Agriculture in the 12 states in the country yesterday in Abuja.
The Commissioners of Agriculture in 4 northern states have confirmed the presence of the birds.
The states are:
1. Kebbi State
2. Zamfara State
3. Sokoto State
4. Jigawa State
Ogbeh stated that the presence of army warm had already started affecting grains in some parts of the country.
Ogbeh said: “There is warning that we have received that locusts and quelea birds are massing up in Niger Republic from where they normally attack us in Nigeria.
“We know how dangerous quelea birds can be and locusts. If they arrive within hours and days, they would have wiped out everything the farmers would have put in the field.
“We already have maize crisis. We may have food problems if we are attacked. This country would be in turmoil. We can’t afford that.
“Most of the poultry farms are in trouble and many families are hungry. We have got to start working together like this to deal with these things as soon as there is any sign of them.
“We must have an emergency team between you and ourselves to tackle these issues very swiftly.”
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