How Boko Haram caused Tomato Scarcity in Nigeria

boko-haram_3173406b  The statement that insurgency in the North East by the Boko Haram sect led to the current tomato scarcity experienced across the country made by the Minister of Information and Culture did not only amuse me; it also reminded me of the former Minister of Information, Labaran Makun’s statement that the then President Goodluck Jonathan brought Facebook to Nigeria.
While I am just like any other Nigerian, who will jump of headlines to draw a conclusion without reading the news in full, the two statements just go to show the kind of country we have and of course, the kind of citizens we are.
The Minister of Agriculture, Mr. Audu Ogbeh clearly stated that the current tomato scarcity is caused by what is popularly known as “tomato Ebola” and this makes it even funnier that another Minister is attributing the situation to the insurgency. Alhaji Lai Mohammed claims that farmers have been chased away from their zone due to insecurity. He also added that the country has lost two years of harvest to the insurgency.
I will not be drawing any conclusion to what the honorable Minister said, but I have one question – why should we be suffering this issue when the insurgency has been defeated according to the same Minister of Information. This question leads to two sub-questions – the first concerns the Minister’s claim of losing two years harvest, but the last time I checked, Nigerian tomato farmers do not store their produce so how can be losing a harvest that has never been stored? The other question is that if Boko Haram did not cause tomato scarcity when the insurgency was biting hard, why do we have scarcity now that the present administration is claiming victory over the insurgency.
So before our Ministers and other public office holders come out to make statements, they should think carefully and remember that “the talker should remember those that know how to listen.” And for Nigerians, especially the young ones, it is high time we started embracing politics and politicking if we want to put a stop to this menace and embarrassment.

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