By Steve Agbota
The Managing Director Universal Quest Nigeria, Mr. Sotonye Anga, has revealed that farmers lost over N100 billion to the flood that ravaged farmlands, houses and markets across the country recently.
This is even as he said the negative impact of the flood would reduce the volume of exports going to the nation’s seaports.
Anga who spoke with Daily Sun via telephone phone interview on Thursday, said that the flood came in and affected farmers livelihood, adding that the kind of negative economic impact the flood brought is huge.
However, he noted that there will be a decline in export revenue from agricultural production and there will be also a decline in foreign exchange earnings from agricultural sector as a result of the flood.
According to him, in most cases, farmers have lost 100 per cent of their produce, saying if a farmer loses 100 per cent of his produce, definitely, the farmer will be left with nothing to sell.
His words: “What do you expect such farmer to live on? What is he going to export? The answer is nothing, which means that without understanding the impact of the flood, a lot of farmers have been thrown into poverty that is what has happened.”
He said it means that there will be decline in the volume of export going to the ports, saying the only thing is that the flood didn’t affect every part of Nigeria and those places the flood did not hit, goods from there can be exported.
“But in the worst hit areas, there will be very low volume for export. If you look at it economically, it spells disaster for the farmers and of course for the nation. It is a terrible one because the flood is not a palatable issue, which has increased the level of farmers’ poverty.
“Remember a lot of farmers depend on themselves to grow their crops, provide inputs and do all of these things.
It is during when their crops are harvested that they can sell, repay all the debts they collected and live on the rest, send their children to school and get more inputs to plant subsequently.
“Now they have lost their produce, you can imagine the kind of impact that will cost. So if we go into indept calculations to do indept analysis of the lost to farmers, we will be talking about a hundred billion naira that is this flood has brought in,” he added.
He said this kind of flood should not be allow to happen in Nigeria again, adding that government should sit down to look at what caused the degree of this flood and what can be done to prevent it happening again.
“Government needs to build more infrastructure such as more dams to tackle this issue of flood. The next Government coming into power should use its first premium to tackle this kind of flood from happening again because in my whole life of farming, I have never seen this kind of destruction when it comes to flood before. Livelihood of a lot of farmers wiped off.
“Who do we cry to as farmers? Politicians are busy doing politics when our livelihood has been destroyed. Financial loses have been incurred. How do we recover from it? So is a painful one! So the government needs to sit down and put preventative solutions in place that will prevent this magnitude of loss from happening ever again in Nigeria. If nothing is done, we are going to experience it next year again,” he warned.
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