By Stanley Onyekwere
As Abuja residents join in marking this year’s World Food Day, the National Council for Women Societies (NCWS) yesterday unveiled a food show, christened National Unity Food Fair, aimed at promoting indigenous cuisine and food culture.
At the fair, which coincides with Food Day, set aside by the Un-World Food Organization, to advocate for zero hunger, participants mostly women used the platform to showcase readymade consumables, fresh, raw, dried and processed food.
Welcoming guests to the event held at the premises of Centre for Women Development, in Abuja, NCWS National President, Dr. Gloria Laraba Shoda explained that the development of a food culture is related to the culture, environment and socio-economic condition of the society.
Shoda said the Council intends to use the platform to generate demand, and enhance increase in employment generation among women, and to compliment government’s effort in the attainment of the sustainable development goals.
“All over the world, food is an essential and very important element of life and everyday need. And Nigeria’s food culture is therefore a reflection of her multi-ethnic and Sociocultural environments.
“ The National Unity Food Fair 2018 will be an exhibition of all eatable, delicious, exotic, nutritious and popular dishes and cuisine from all the 36 states and FCT,” she stressed.
While flagging off the fair, Wife of the President, Aisha Buhari represented, by Dr. Haji Sani, noted that farmers especially women are contributing enormously to advance agricultural productivity in the country.
She reiterated the current administration’s commitment to sustain reinvigorated effort towards improving the fortune of agriculture in the country.
Also speaking, FCT Minister, Malam Muhammad Musa Bello, who was represented by Director Office of the Permanent Secretary, FCTA, Mr Samuel Atang described the fair as an epoch making event, that would further boost ongoing efforts to ensure food safety and sufficiency.
He assured the organisers of the unflinching support of the FCT Administration, to make the fair an enduring activity.
In his keynote address, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Audu Ogbeh, said the launching of the Food Fair is very apt, as it reflects the administration’s commitment to unity and diversification of the economy through agriculture.
Represented by director, Agricultural Extension Services, Mrs. Karima Babangida, the Minister said tackling hunger, poverty and food insufficiency remain an ongoing struggle, which must be supported by all and sundry.
He commended the NCWS for organizing the food Fair, which aims at encouraging the consumption of locally grown agricultural produce as well as promote indigenous food culture.
He therefore promised to include the Unity Food Fair as apart of activities integrated into the annual world food programme.
Earlier, in a goodwill message, CEO, Travel Marketing Partners Ltd, a tourism firm, Mr Shiva Ilupeju, noted without food security, no life can be guaranteed in any society.
He said women cannot be left behind in the quest to ensure food availability and safety in the land.