By Temitope Akintoye,
The Lagos State Government has distributed over one tonne of Downy Mildew Resistant (DMR) and Leaf Streak Resistant (LSR) -yellow hybrid maize seedlings to over 650 farmers in the state, saying that move was aimed at significantly increasing local capacity for the crop production and reducing food scarcity within the region.
It said that the seedlings had been distributed to the farmers for use during the ongoing planting season and expressed hopes that the resultant harvest would reduce the problem of food shortage which was being faced within the state as well as in several regions across the nation.
The Commissioner for Agriculture, Gbolahan Lawal, said that it had become imperative for government to take an active role in the distribution of agricultural palliatives aimed at reducing the possibility of widespread food scarcity which could rise as a result of the adverse effects of the deadly coronavirus pandemic upon the nation.
Lawal, who confirmed the seedling distribution through a statement released on Wednesday, revealed that the Lagos State Government had embarked upon the agricultural donation of maize seedlings because the crop was one of the most useful in the West-African region.
According to the commissioner, maize was a source of important dietary minerals such as carbohydrate, protein, iron, vitamin B, and others, the cultivation of which stood to benefit the state and nation in general.
He disclosed that the distributed seedling variety was a hybrid breed that had been genetically engineered to produce high yields and a better quality harvest for the farmers.