The co-founder of Global Initiative for Nigeria’s Development, Mr Michael Ale, has urged the Federal Government to include water sector stakeholders in the efforts to ensure speedy reforms on food security in the country.
He hailed President Bola Tinubu’s declaration of a state of emergency on food security in Nigeria and reminded the Federal Government that there would not be any sustainable and equitable food security without water fairness.
Ale, who is the National President of the Association of Waterwell Drilling Rig Owners and Practitioners, spoke in a statement titled, “Emergency on food security: FG should embrace professional contribution by technocrats in water resources,” made available to newsmen in Ado Ekiti on Sunday.
The GIND leader, who also coordinates Courageous Nigerians Livelihood Programme, hailed Tinubu for making the food reforms an inter-ministerial approach but advised that water stakeholders should be embraced.
He stated, “It should no longer be business as usual in the different ministries. Stakeholders invited and those not yet invited should be ready to play their role selflessly.
“State of emergency overrides other instructions and laid down principles, thus bypassing usual bureaucracy. But what can man do without water? The National Security Council should invite the water associations for their contribution.
“Irrigation using surface water alone cannot handle most of our peasant farmers’ needs and this wouldn’t be fair on farmers from the different parts of the country.
Conjunctive use of both surface and groundwater is critical for sustainable food security and job creation.
“Engaging stakeholders in the water sector, especially practitioners within the master drillers groups like AWDROP will safeguard the fund allotted for the food security project. These stakeholders need not be left behind to provide affordable water for irrigation and livelihood,“ he said.
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