Southern States Dismiss Blockade While Northern Food Traders Insist On Strike
Some southern state governments and farmers have dismissed blockade by northern food suppliers, saying it is an opportunity for the South to boost its food production capacity. Officials of the states including Lagos, Cross River, Akwa Ibom, Delta, Enugu and Ondo in separate interviews with The PUNCH on Monday explained their actions to ensure self-sufficiency in food and animal production.
But Ondo and Cross Rivers states went further to take a swipe at the northern food suppliers, saying they would not beg the traders to end their blockade, which entered the 4th day on Monday. Recall that cattle and foodstuff dealers under the aegis of the Amalgamated Union of Foodstuffs and Cattle Dealers of Nigeria on Thursday stopped supplies to the South. Their action followed the FG’s failure to meet their demands, which include payment of N475m compensation for destruction of lives and property during #EndSARS protests and last month’s crisis in Shasha, Oyo State.
To enforce the strike, the union’s task force prevented members from transporting livestock and food from the north to the southern part of the country. Many trucks, which disobeyed its directives, were stopped along the Jebba-Kaduna road last Friday, prompting the military to intervene. But the union, at a press conference in Abuja on Monday accused the military of harassing its members. It added that it had not called off the strike.