Connecting the dots. Two separate news items in the Guardian yesterday, March 15 2017 gives cause for optimism and caution.
The front page banner headline screams that 'inflation drops to 17.8% on falling food prices, others' and in the body of the story we find that month on month inflation dropped by 94 basic points lower than the 18.72% recorded in January 2017.
It is really heartening news but in a tiny news story on page 7 with the headline, 'NIMET forecasts short period of rain this year' we learn that the rains will stop early this year resulting in a shorter farming season in the Northern part of Nigeria, our food basket.
It will also affect the South East. According to the Director of NIMET, Dr Anthony Anuforum, the shorter length of growing season will affect farmers who desire to cultivate maize and cereals.
The economic implication is that this will affect harvest and by extension food supply. If remedial steps are not urgently taken, the shortfall in supply will lead to higher food prices.
NIMET has advised that farmers harvest rainfall for use when the rains stop. So if you are waiting for the rains to be established and plant by April/May, you better plan to start earlier.
Written By Kayode Olagesin