Apparently encouraged by the public acceptance and applauds for its efforts at providing local substitute for a staple that has since been banned from been imported, the Lagos State Government, on Wednesday, assured that sale of its ‘Lake Rice’ would continue in designated outlets and centres across the three senatorial district of the state.
The Commissioner for Agriculture, Toyin Suarau, while reviewing sales reports of the product from designated retail outlets and centres said the State government is working tirelessly to ensure availability of the product.
‘Lake (acronym for Lagos-Kebbi) Rice’ is a partnership between Lagos and Kebbi for the development of agricultural commodities like rice, wheat, groundnut, onions, maize, sorghum and beef value chains.
According to Suarau, the collaboration will ensure that quality rice emanates from the 2.5 metric tonne capacity mills to boost food supply in Lagos, adding that “the product which is packaged in 50kg, 25kg and 10kg bags is being offered for sale to residents at N12,000.00, N6,000.00 and N2,500.00 respectively”.
While disclosing the exact quantity of the product available for sale or so far purchased by residents of the state, Suarau assured that all designated retail outlets and centres will have enough supply to meet growing demands of residents.
He urged residents within Lagos Central Senatorial District to get the product at Agric Area Office, Ajah; Lagos Island, LASTMA Works yard, Lagos Island; Alakoto Senior High School, Ajegunle; Teslim Balogun Stadium, Surulere and Mobolaji Johnson Sports Centre, Rowe Park, Yaba
Those residing in the Lagos East Senatorial District can purchase the rice at Odogunyan Farm Service Centre, Ikorodu; Temu Farm Service Centre, Epe; Noforija Town Hall, Eredo; Magbon Alade School, Ibeju Lekki and State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) premises, Maryland.
Those in Lagos West Senatorial District can go to Lagos State Agricultural Development Authority(LSADA)/Farm Service Centre, Oko-oba, Agege; Lagos Agricultural Inputs Supply Authority (LAISA), Ojo; Farm Service Centre, Marina-Badagry and Ikeja Grammar School, Bolade, Oshodi for the product.
Reacting, President Muhammadu Buhari praised the governors of Lagos and Kebbi states, Akinwunmi Ambode and Atiku Bagudu for the partnership that offered cheap rice to Nigerians, saying they have done well.
A Friday, December 23, 2016 statement by presidential spokesman, Femi Adesina, quoted Buhari saying: “It gladdens my heart to get reports of our citizens rushing to purchase this cheaper local rice to enable them and their families enjoy the Christmas and New Year celebrations.”
What both states have done, he continued, is “evidence of a new base being laid for the Nigerian economy, founded and propelled by agriculture, away from substantial dependence on oil and gas for national revenue”.
He urged other state governments to replicate the praiseworthy example of Lake Rice in other staple crops and dairy products.