NANTS organized a validation meeting of the outcome of the survey it conducted on the Federal Government of Nigeria’s Cassava Bread Initiative (CBI). The survey was undertaken to measure the level of awareness among the population and compliance with the policy among the policy beneficiaries. The survey is part of NANTS project on monitoring budget and policy structures in Nigeria tagged “Nigeria Agriculture Policy and Investment Observatory”-NAPIO which is supported by the Federal Public Administration Reform arm of the DFID (FEPAR). The validation meeting which took place at the Nuggets Hotel – Abuja on the 10th September 2013, brought together over 50 participants from the civil society, farmers and their cooperatives, media, government, development partners, and specifically, bread bakers and flour millers.
The validation exercise which featured the full presentation of the outcomes of the survey had the following comments and observations collated:
i. General Assessment of the Policy: Participants generally noted that the Cassava Bread Initiative (CBI) is one policy step that is well conceived and undertaken by government in the right direction. Specifically, participants were of the unanimous view that the policy is home-grown and inward-looking, and therefore capable of reducing the massive importation of wheat into the country, saving large volume of foreign exchange, creating jobs and reducing poverty and unemployment among youths.
ii. Buy-in and Acceptability among Nigerians: In addition to the foregoing assessment, participants were of the view that the appreciable level of the CBI acceptability is further reinforced by the outcome of the survey which indicates that about 83% percent of respondents are in favour of or support the policy. It was further noted that adequate buy-in from the general public is necessary to guarantee sustainable implementation of the policy, thus the need for continuous promotion and awareness creation.