… Urged to seek expert guidance in pesticides application

By Chinyere Anyanwu

 

Farmers have been urged to seek expert guidance in the application of pesticides to crops to avoid poisoning even as they were warned against the increasing sale of contaminated and adulterated food in the market.

The Acting Executive Vice Chairman of the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC), Dr. Adamu Abdullahi, sounded the warning at a one-day sensitisation for traders, farmers, Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), and the public on forceful ripening of fruits, adulterated palm oil and contaminated meat and grains.

The acting executive vice chairman of the commission said that some traders and farmers were engaging in various forms of adulteration without minding the health outcomes and implications on consumers.

Abdullahi said the move was to ensure a healthier society in line with President Bola Tinubu’s Renewed Hope Agenda.

He said the Act that established the commission gave them powers to evacuate fake and adulterated products from the markets to avoid purchase by consumers.

According to him, “we have to renew the hope of our people to be alive and healthy. We will go to the markets to sensitise traders, educate the public and sellers, that adulterated and contaminated products are not allowed in the market and if they see any, they have somewhere to report them.”

He added: “We are going to the markets in the states, at the grassroots, to find out sharp practices going on and to ensure we get a healthier society and we have to ensure that the goods in the market are fully in line with standard specifications.”

The Vice President, North Central National Association of Nigeria Traders (NANTS), Dr. Edozie Ugwu, who also spoke at the event commended the FCCPC for the sensitisation efforts.

Dr. Ugwu said Nigerians had lost their vital organs to the adulterations of food, adding that the market association would collaborate with the commission and other government agencies to ensure that the law penalises any trader indulging in the practice.

“What we intend doing is to take this back to sensitise our traders on the importance of avoiding these adulterated foods while pleading that this would extend to other key markets.”

A stakeholder from the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, Femi Stephen, noted that adulteration had been linked to many health challenges such as abdominal pains, nausea, brain damage, stomach disorder, liver disease and breathing difficulty.

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