- Â He is our proud export, says Amosun
Former President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, has congratulated his former Minister of Agriculture and President of the African Development Bank (AfDB), Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, on his emergence as the 2017 World Food Prize laureate, describing him as a man of exceptional work ethic.
The former president defined Adesina as the man who transformed agriculture in Nigeria by introducing several innovations that changed the face of farming, boosted the capacity of farmers and expanded the nationâ€™s ability to feed herself.
The media adviser to the ex-president, Ikechukwu Eze in a statement in Abuja yesterday, said Jonathan stated this in a letter of goodwill to Adesina which the former president personally signed.
Jonathan also noted that during Adesinaâ€™s years as agriculture minister, staple food prices remained stable, even in the face of serious challenges like the devastating floods of 2012 and the â€œdifficulties occasioned then by global economic recession.â€
The letter read: â€œI wish to most sincerely congratulate you for your emergence as the World Food Prize Laureate for the year 2017.
â€œI am not surprised that such a highly prized honour has being conferred on you, given your outstanding and exemplary performance as my former Minister of Agriculture.
â€œI must state that I have met many men in my years on earth, but few have the intellect and the exceptional work ethic you possess.
â€œDuring your years as Nigeriaâ€™s agriculture minister and driver of my administrationâ€™s Agricultural Transformation Agenda (ATA), you introduced several innovations like the e-wallet fertilizer and seed distribution system which cut out the middle man, eliminated corruption and expanded Nigeriaâ€™s ability to feed herself.
â€œYou oversaw a programme that reduced our food import bill by almost 50 per cent, and working with others in my administration, you helped Nigeria become one of only a handful of nations in the world to reasonably reduce hunger levels between 2011and 2015, according to the International Food Policy Research Institute.â€
Also, Ogun State Governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, has described Adesina as â€œa proud export from Nigeria and a good example of Ogun standard.â€
While congratulating the former minister for emerging the 2017 World Food Prize Laureate, the governor, in a statement, also said the honour is well deserved.
Amosun recalled the distinguished and revolutionary leadership of Adesina as Minister for Agriculture in Nigeria, when according to him, he broke the age-long fertiliser cartel that had kept the price of the farm input beyond the reach of the average Nigerian farmer, through the introduction of the e-Wallet system of agricultural input distribution.