THE Federal Government will no longer import rice from 2017 based on a new agricultural policy .
This is even as state governors have given their commitments to ensure the policy succeeds.
Zamfara State governor, Abdulazeez Yari disclosed this to State House correspondents after a meeting on the new agriculture policy held inside the Presidential Villa, Abuja, yesterday.
The meeting had in attendance some state governors, permanent secretaries of relevant ministries and heads of government agencies.
Yari, who is also the chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) said the meeting discussed how governments at all levels can boost rice production.
“The meeting was on the new policy on agriculture and food sustainability. “We discussed how we can boost rice production in Nigeria and start thinking about how we are going to put policy in place on how rice importation will be banned in the country.
“We have the potential; we have the human resources; we have arable land to grow rice.
“In the next two years, we will not need to bring rice from outside Nigeria. We are going to ban it.
“It is only in Nigeria, a country of millions of people, that there is no food security.
“We discussed the policy with the relevant permanent secretaries and CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele.
“Nigeria is currently a major importer of rice. Now, the political will is in place to stop it. We, in about nine states, are going to be engaged in massive rice production.