The Onion Producers and Marketers Association of Nigeria (OPMAN) has suspended onion supplies to the Southeast due to insecurity.
Aliyu Isah, the National President of OPMAN, announced the plan on Wednesday.
He explained that the association took this decision after two of their truck members’ trucks were hijacked by gunmen they suspected were affiliated with IPOB.
Gunmen thought to be members of IPOB have been attacking public infrastructure in the southeast for a few weeks now, killing security operatives as well.
Last week, they hijacked two truckloads of onions from the North in Imo State and distributed their contents to the general public.
Fire destroys N2b onions
Farmers and marketers say they have lost onions worth N2.4 billion to a fire in Sokoto State.
Umaru Aliyu Gidan Fadama, one of the victims, said that the fire started in Yan doya market, otherwise known as Ramin Kura.
He said it started around 12:30 am on Wednesday.
“We were told that it began with a Golf vehicle offloading yams at market and then spread to other places, including where our storage facilities are.
“I personally lost 60 bags of onions and I know of some who lost more than 100 bags,” he said.
OPMAN’s National President told our reporter that 200,000 bags of onions worth N2 billion were destroyed in the fire.
“We are only praying to God to give them relief, but it was a terrible and unfortunate event,” he said.
He predicted that the issue could cause a serious onion crisis in the country since most of the affected producers and marketers had lost their money.
“Some farmers sell their produce to buy inputs for the upcoming season, and now, they are unable to return to the farm,” he said.
He pleaded with the federal and state governments to assist them so that they could continue to run their businesses.