The Nigeria Cassava Growers Association (NCGA) is ready to hold a world summit on cassava to sensitise stakeholders on the potentialities of the crop in the country.
National President of the Association, Pastor Segun Adewumi told Journalists that the summit is aimed at attracting government’s intervention on the produce.
Adewumi said that cassava had the potential to employ over five million Nigerians both youths and women, while he expressed regret over the neglect of the produce.
“We are making an arrangement to have a world summit on cassava, and we are envisaging the various organs of government to collaborate with us.
“Cassava can face oil; and we can even make better money than you get from oil, if we pay attention to it.
“It can employ over five million Nigerians both as farmers, industrial or factory workers.
“The entire world concedes cassava production to Nigeria, and it is what you have that you promote.
“Cassava can give Nigeria more earnings than oil, so I think we should go into massive cassava production and processing,’’ he advised.
Adewunmi was optimistic that the summit to sensitise the farmers, stakeholders and states with comparative advantage of the crop would hold before the 2019 general elections.
The national president said that the association currently had no fewer than over 1.6 million registered members.
He appealed to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to facilitate the disbursement of loans to cassava farmers under the Anchor Borrowers Programme.
“We are exporting job opportunities by depending on imported wheat, and it has been proved that cassava is healthier to our health than white wheat flour.
“So, these are the things that we want to enlighten people and government about, so that they can legislate rightly on the use of cassava.
“We hope that the government will come up with something that will help the cassava farmers in Nigeria.’’