The Federal Government has signed a tripartite agreement for insurance to tackle the risks of transporting agricultural produce across the country.
The MoU, which is an implementation of the National Transit Insurance Scheme (NATIS), is between Nigerian Agricultural Insurance Corporation (NAIC), Nigeria Association of Agricultural Produce Dealers (NAAPD) and Association of Local Governments of Nigeria (ALGON).
Speaking at the signing ceremony of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in Abuja on Friday, the Managing Director, NAIC, Mrs Folashade Joseph described the move as historic.
Joseph said the scheme, which was long overdue, would among other things, cater for huge losses suffered by farmers and agro dealers in the event of transitional risks like accidents.
“What that does is that we lose the produce. I am sure you are aware that the President is very serious about the project Agriculture,” she said.
“We must produce what we will eat and eat what we produce and all hands must be on deck.
“It must be a collective effort that insurance is in place for sustainability of agriculture.
“You know insurance is getting popular as people are beginning to know its importance.”
On his part, the Founder and Chairman, Board of Trustees (BOT) of NAAPD, Mr Charles Orji, said the signing of the MoU, was a dream come true for him.
According to him, the signing of the MoU will go a long way in helping farmers secure their goods in the event of any form of loss, particularly transitional accidents.
“We as traders suffer a lot when moving our goods from one place to another,” he said.
“Most times in the event of accidents, truck owners get insurance but the owner of the goods suffer huge losses.”
Also speaking, Secretary-General of NAAPD, Mr Kingsley Chikezie, said the organisation decided to take the giant stride because of its commitment to food security in the country.
He said to ensure food security, insurance is very important, particularly in a country like Nigeria, where some roads are in bad conditions, leading to accidents.
The Director of Finance and Administration of ALGON, Mr Salawu Ozigi, stated that the association is committed to ensuring the impact of the scheme is felt in every nook and cranny of the country.
Salawu, who represented the ALGON National President, described the project as laudable, adding that it would not only safeguard goods but also the lives of the transporters.
He assured that ALGON would put necessary measures in place to ensure the success of the scheme.