PRESIDENT, Christian Council of Nigeria, CCN, His Eminence Emmanuel Udofia has called on Nigerians and particularly Christians to take up positive initiatives towards food security other than waiting for the government.
He made the call at a one-day workshop aimed at raising awareness and understanding on the interrelations between poverty, hunger, food insecurity, formulating and using church food policy as an option as well as exposing the participants to issues around the Maputo Declaration.
The clergy stressed the need for Nigerians grow what we eat, eat what you grow.“We must strive to grow what we eat, eat what you grow.” He said.
Speaking on the achievements made so far, the National Coordinator of CCN, Celine Osukwu stated that the Council has recruited and trained staff (Coordinators) on Food Campaign through the churches thereby touching lives of graduates and eliminating poverty through job creation.
According to her, it was through the effort of the CCN advocacy that prevented the Federal government of Nigeria from signing the ‘Economic Partnership Agreements’, which if signed have adverse effect on development of Nigerian economy.
“We have sensitized and mobilized more than 5000 church leaders into the campaign.
“We have organised National Church Leaders Symposium on Ethnicity, Food Security and Poultry and Fish Importation in Nigeria. The Symposium had over 100 participants from different ethnic groups and different religious groups
“We held empowerment training Workshop for 60 local farmers in collaboration with Kaduna state Ministry of Agriculture in Kafancan, Kaduna state.
“Through the CCN Ecumenical Food Security project, more than 30 individuals had been able to set up small scale farms in the areas of fish rearing, poultry and backyard farms through which they feed, make income and sustain their families.
“We held interactive workshops in some states for Farmers, State ministry of Agriculture with community leaders and agricultural credit facilitators and in some states with corps members,” She said.
Similarly, one of the facilitators during the workshop, Barrister Mariann Bassey Orovwuje called on Nigerians to totally avoid Genetically Modified Organisms/foods, GMO, describing it as a silent killer and being unhealthy.
She further charged church leaders to speak out against the importation of false solution and every unwholesome agricultural policies and laws at both State and Federal level.
Orovwuje also decried poor implementation of Maputo Declaration by the Federal government and encouraged Church leaders to cash in on the policy.
Also during the workshop, CCN, whose mandate as a civil society organisation bothers on Ecumenical food security and peace building advocacy, officially unveiled the ‘Ten Commandments of food’ by her General Secretary, Rev. Dr. Yusuf Wushishi