The Federal Government has assured that it would adopted multi-faceted approaches that combine sustainable agriculture practices, climate-smart technologies, and social protection programmes to achieve food and nutrition security.
Senator Abubakar Bagudu, Minister of Budget and Economic Planning, revealed this on Thursday at the 2023 Edition of the Nigeria Nutrition Week Media Sensitisation on Food and Nutrition Security in Abuja.
Bagudu represented by Director of Social Development, Dr. Sanjo Faniran, said there was an urgent need for adaptation and mitigation strategies that would safeguard Nigeria’s food systems and enhance the nutritional well-being of the citizenry.
As part of the commitment of the Federal Government in the just concluded COP28 in Dubai, the minister said the Government would prioritise the development and adoption of climate-smart agricultural practices which would include the promotion of resilient crop varieties, efficient irrigation systems, agroforestry, and sustainable land management techniques.
According to him, “This is envisaged to enhance the resilience of our agricultural systems and ensure a steady supply of nutritious food to the greater number of our citizenry.”
While acknowledging the challenges posed by climate change, he expressed optimism that climate change would be mitigated through collective action and unwavering commitment of the stakeholders.
He said: “As we celebrate Nigeria Nutrition Week, let us reflect on the importance of a sustainable food system and the critical role it plays in ensuring the health and well-being of our citizens.
“I call upon all stakeholders, including government agencies, development partners, civil society organisations, the private sector, and individuals, to join hands in addressing the impact of climate change on food and nutrition security.
“Together, we can build a resilient and sustainable food system that nourishes our people, protects our environment, and contributes to the overall development of our great nation.
“Let us all be reminded that attaining optimal nutritional status for all Nigerians in the face of the ever-challenging climate change is our collective responsibility.
“The Federal Government would adopt all the recommendations advanced during the COPs 28 to mitigate the effect of the prevailing climate change.
“We all have responsibility to ensure that every child has the opportunity to survive and thrive.”
In her remarks, the Head of Food and Nutrition Division in Social Development Department in the Federal Ministry of Budget and Economic Planning, Mrs. Chitoo Nelson, said one of the take-aways from the training was for the media to appreciate the fact that food and nutrition challenges are critical issues that require collective efforts to address.
She said: “We are being challenged with effects of climate change and all other challenges, a lot of people are food and nutrition unsecure, and all hands must be on deck to ensure that people have the right food, quality and sufficient amount of whatever they need to eat.
“And for us to achieve this, people have to be available, have the economic power to be able to have it.
“And food might be available, and people might not have access to it due to insecurity or some other issues.
“Everything has to be safe for us to ensure everybody is food and nutrition secure. People should have sufficient food and nutrition.”
The theme for this year’s Nutrition Week is “Climate Change Impact on Food and Nutrition Security.”