Author(s): Cordelia Onyinyechi Omodero and Kingsley Aderemi Adeyemo
The issue of food insecurity in Nigeria reaches the climax as COVID-19 pandemic and the necessary lockdowns are in progress. Nigeria that is popularly known as the giant of African, suddenly realizes its handicap in food production due to the nation’s inability to feed the masses. As a result, the lockdown to curtail the spread of coronavirus disease becomes ineffective in Nigeria due to hunger. This study employs simple statistical methods such as simple percentages, tables, charts, regression analysis and graphs to highlight the stunted growth of agriculture in Nigeria and why it is almost impossible for the inhabitants to cope with the scourge of hunger following the compulsory lockdown necessitated by COVID-19 pandemic. The study employs time-series data that cover a period from 2008 to 2019 from the World Data Atlas and CBN Statistical Bulletin. The findings reveal that food security is not yet feasible in Nigeria. The contribution of agriculture to national economic growth is still meagre. The t-statistic result shows that the crop production level cannot feed the population. Each crop production has an insignificant impact on the people. The crop production declines from 26.7% in 2008 to 12.5% in 2019 and cannot measure up with the increasing population of Nigeria. Fishing and forestry are too intangible to reckon with, while livestock farming contributes only 2.2% in 2008 and declines to 0.9% in 2019. The study also finds evidence that Nigerians cannot cope with COVID-19 lockdowns and recommends the strengthening of the agricultural sector to guarantee food security in the country.