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Food Crisis: 50 Niger Republic-bound food trucks intercepted in Zamfara

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Fifty trucks moving foodstuffs out of Nigeria to the neighbouring Niger Republic on Monday were intercepted by the Zamfara State Transport Agency.

The agency, carrying out a presidential order meant to correct the food crisis and hoarding, grounded the trucks loaded with assorted grains.

Last Thursday, President Bola Tinubu directed the trio of the National Security Adviser Nuhu Ribadu, the Inspector-General of Police, Kayode Egbetokun, and the Director-General of the Department of State Services, Yusuf Bichi, to work with the state governors and go after those hoarding foodstuff in the country.

President decided in a meeting with the governors in Abuja on the current food crisis caused by the hikes in transportation costs after the fuel subsidy removal and the inability of farmers to harvest their crops because of abductors and bandits.

Nigeria Customs Service on Sunday reported that it intercepted 15 trailers moving foodstuff through the Sokoto borders to Niger Republic.

The Kano State Government also sealed 10 warehouses said to be hoarding food items.

Confirming the stopped 50 trucks in Zamfara, an indigene of Zurmi town in Zurmi Local Government Area of the state, Shehu Sani, told journalists on Monday that the vehicles were intercepted at Gidan Jaja village, close to the Nigerian borders with the Niger Republic.

Sale Shinkafi, the spokesperson for ZARTO, alleged that the trucks were attempting to smuggle the food items to the Niger Republic.

“Our men intercepted 50 vehicles loaded with assorted grains while trying to smuggle them out of the country. We directed the owners to go back and sell the commodities to Nigerians at the appropriate prices,” he said.

Shinkafi noted that any of the agency’s officials did not accompany the intercepted trucks but were only ordered to return to their respective localities and sell the commodities at affordable prices.

He stated, “You know that our main concern is to make sure that the food items are not smuggled out of the country. We only refused to allow them to get into Niger Republic.”

 

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