The minister who spoke on Channels Television, said farmers were forced to desert the North East because of the activities of the insurgents.
According to Lai Mohammed, “People talk about the price of tomato but they forget one thing. They forget that the price of tomato today is a direct result of the fact that we have lost two years harvest to Boko Haram insurgency”.
He continued “Most of the people you see riding Okada in Lagos are people who would have been in their farms to produce consumable items”
Taking his point further, the minister continued “Do you farm where there is war? We have lost two seasons of harvest. In addition, we have had very poor rainfall last year and this year. These combined are responsible for the scarcity of tomato. Go and ask economists and agriculturists, they will tell you”
His claim however contradicts the ministry of Agriculture’s recent statement on the tomato crisis which put the blame on the Tomato Ebola infection that destroyed tomato harvest across the country, especially in the Northern part of the country
Reacting to this latest claim, some experts have berated the minister for giving conflicting information on the state of affairs. An agricultural expert who spoke to our correspondent lamented that the FG team seems to have a very worrisome disconnect across board. This he said, has continued to lead to the release of conflicting information on very important national issues. He advised the FG to put its house in order to ensure Nigerians get much more credible information. This he said is critical for national development.