The Organic Fertilizer Producers and Suppliers Association of Nigeria (OFPSAN) has called for the disbandment of the Presidential Fertilizer Initiative (PFI), noting that it hasn’t met expectations of engagement.
The National Chairman of OFPSAN, Mr. Noel Keyen, made the call during an online presentation on the topic “Presidential Fertilizer Initiative 2017–2021: The Unanswered Questions”, organized by Journalists Go Organic Initiative.
OFPSAN is a national trade association set up to represent the needs and interests of organic fertilizer manufacturers, blending plants, major distributors, dealers, and farmers in Nigeria. The vision of the association is to attain improved productivity and environmental sustainability in Nigerian agriculture through balanced and judicious use of fertilizers.
Its membership is open to all registered companies under the Nigerian laws dealing with the manufacturing, importation, blending, and distribution of good quality fertilizers.
Keyen berated PFI that the initiative being led by Governor Abubakar Badaru has been hijacked by middlemen, reducing the role of Nigeria Agricultural Insurance Cooperation (NAIC) to the importation of raw materials , storage and wholesale of raw materials to blenders.
He highlighted that PFI was established to eliminate the huge fertilizer subsidy burden of the FGN, create thousands of direct and indirect jobs and alleviate the plight of domestic farmers by ensuring availability of fertilizers, adding that none of the listed objectives have been achieved.
The OFPSAN boss described the PFI as a failed project that should be largely replaced with a more viable and sustainable organic option that is globally accepted with several all-round advantages, while asking the government to address many unanswered questions concerning the PFI.
“I wonder if the major actors in the PFI are aware that our collective national food security is seriously under threat and that Nigeria doesn’t require selling the same failed old PFI story to Mr. President for a new phase.”