Climate change: FG fingers food insecurity, climate effect for rising inflation

The Federal Government has said food insecurity is as a result of climate impact which is also accountable for the rising prices of foods and inflation across the country.

The Ministry of Finance spokesperson, Olude Omolade, made the disclosure in a statement signed by the Permanent Secretary, Budget and Planning, Nebolisa Anako, at a workshop on the development of an implementation strategy for the Nigeria Food Systems Transformation Pathway at the weekend in Abuja.

The permanent secretary, who was represented by the Director of National Monitoring and Evaluation, Zakari Lawani, described the ongoing programme as a call to action to achieve progress in dealing with issues of poverty, hunger, malnutrition, disease, unemployment, conflict and changing weather patterns.

He said that it sufficed to say that food insecurity and malnutrition as well as the influence of climate change had resulted in lower incomes and higher prices of foods, adding that food is out of the reach of many and undermines the right to food, thereby, stalling the efforts to meet the Sustainable Development that emphasizes ‘zero hunger’.”

Anako added that the journey of food systems dialogues in Nigeria started in January 2021, as the country responded to the call by the Secretary General of the United Nations that countries should look inward and organize different levels of dialogue to identify issues and challenges around the food systems and come up with sustainable innovative strategies towards ending hunger and all forms of malnutrition in line with SDGs.

He called on all relevant stakeholders including government at all levels, developmental organizations to support the implementation of all the priority actions with the 2022 call to action as well as mobilize more resources and monitor progress.

“It is important to note that this workshop is an opportunity to review and endorse the underpinning principles and the key thrust of the implementation strategy, finalize the governance and coordination arrangements, institute the monitoring and evaluation framework for the implementation of all the 78 priority actions as well as to validate the 2023 action plan,” Anako stated.

Meanwhile, a steering committee has been constituted to provide technical support for the development of the 2023 action plan at the global stock-taking scheduled to hold in Rome in July 2023.

The National Bureau of Statistics’ latest report indicated that the rise in the prices of bread, cereal, rent, potatoes, yam, tubers, vegetables and meat raised inflation in February.

The NBS Consumer Price Index report stated, “The contributions of items on a class basis to the increase in the headline inflation index are presented, thus: bread and cereal (21.67 per cent), actual and imputed rent (7.74 per cent), potatoes, yam and other tubers (6.06 per cent), vegetable (5.44 per cent), and meat (4.78 per cent).”