Food Insecurity: The President of ECOWAS Commission, Mr Jean Brou, has pledged to take appropriate measures to deal with situation of food insecurity, in the 2017 to 2018 crop year.
Brou, in his presentation of the report on implementation of the community strategic framework (2016 -2020) at the ongoing First Ordinary Session of ECOWAS Parliament in Abuja, saidt he need for the measures to be taken had become imperative because agriculture is one of the key priority projects of the commission.
According to him, in spite of low rainfall been recorded in the 2017/2018 season; the region is expected to grow by 3.2per cent this year.
Brou said “the poor rainfall has led to decrease in agricultural production in several members states.
“In this respect appropriate measures must be taken to deal with situations of food insecurity in the region.
“Food crisis is related to climate changes, difficulties in rainfall, so we have to react when this situation occurs because food insecurity affects both women and children.
“This is why we have called on Ministers of Agriculture of the 15 member countries to take decisions, in the bid address the situation.
“We have already taken steps, but we also have to work closely with member countries, we also need to put policies in place to ensure food security and practice of agriculture in the region.”
He said that the practice whereby agricultural production is slightly downgraded for cereals in some Sahelian countries contributed to food situation within the region.
He revealed that the extra-ordinary summit which was held on April 14, had mandated the commission to take necessary measures, to tackle critical issue about food insecurity.
The president decried pastoral situation within the region to have been caused by shortage of rainfall and resulted to early movement of herders and conflicts between herdsmen and farmers.
He further blamed herdsmen and farmers crisis to be caused by inadequacy in grazing land and urged member states to imbibe modern method of forage practice, to proffer solution.
Brou said although the commission established regional stock to ensure food security, more would be done to achieve the desired goal.
He noted that the Commission would come up with regional forest investment and guide mobilization of resources for interventions in trans-boundary areas, to achieve target.
He, however, said that the meeting by Ministers in-charge of Security and Livestock which held from April 24 to Aptil 26, in Abuja provided recommendations to prevent and correct conflicts between herdsmen and farmers.
NAN reports that high points of the event was presentation of strategic plan and report on community projects, discussion, as well as, questions and answers sessions.