Rising food prices: Reps to investigate privatisation,  concession of 22 silos 

 

The House of Representatives has ordered an investigation into the alleged privatisation and concessioning of 22 out of the Nigeria’s 33 functional silos in the country.

The House Tuesday mandated its joint Committee on Agricultural Production and Services, Privatisation and Commercialisation, and Public Assets, to investigate the privatisation/concession of 22 out of 33 Government Silos for grain storage and other critical national assets in Nigeria and report back within four weeks.

The House also urged the federal government to, as a matter of priority, consider subsidising agriculture to revitalise the economy and improve food security in Nigeria.

This was fallout of a motion by Hon. Inuwa Garba, who noted that in September, 2017, the federal government commenced the process of concessioning 22 out of its 33 silo complexes across the country to the private sector to ensure availability of affordable grains across the country.

He said there was need to scrutinise circumstances surrounding the privatisation or concession of Government Silos for Grains Storage in the country considering the vital role these silos play in ensuring food security across the country.

Briefing newsmen after, the lawmaker, who chairs the Science and Engineering Committee of the House said he considered the decision wrong, as this period of food crisis would have been the best time the storage therein would have played the roles for which they were built.

While arguing that the socio-economic wellbeing of Nigerians should be paramount to any private interest, he said President Tinubu may have been misled into believing that there are enough grains stock to be released for Nigerians.