In order to show support for government’s decision to close the country’s border at Seme to rice smuggling, rice processors in Nigeria have pegged the retail price of rice at not more than fifteen thousand naira only,
Addressing journalists in Abuja on Thursday on the development, national Chairman of Rice Processors Association of Nigeria (RIPAN), Alhaji Mohammed Abubarkar Maifata said the association will sanction any rice processor (Millers) who sells above the stipulated price.
The RIPAN Chairman stated that the ex-factory price of per-boiled rice, which Nigerians consume has been pegged at between thirteen thousand,three hundred and fourteen thousand naira only while the final retail price has been marked off at fifteen thousand naira.
The association, he noted, has written to the federal government to express commitment to keeping the price of rice down to the barest minimum and vowed to support the government with intelligence by putting the reports of its surveillance team at the disposal of the government.
According to him, the closure of the Nigerian Benin Republic border would go a long way to curb the menace of rice smuggling so that local producers would have a breather, adding that the association supports the current border closure by government.
The association assured Nigerians that they have tasked themselves to close the gap in rice supply in the market as a result of the border closure, stating that the nation’s demand for rice which is 4 million metric tonnes per annum can be surpassed with the over five million metric tonnes jointly supplied by members of the association and out growers.
Mohammed Abubarkar said the association has been clamouring for the closure of the borders to smugglers for over two years and promised that they will not hike the price of rice.