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World Food Prize awarded to AfDB’s Adesina
July 9, 2017, 11:40 am

African Development Bank (AfDB) President Akinwumi Adesina was awarded the 2017 World Food Prize for his work in advancing human development by improving the quality, quantity, or availability of food in the world.

The US-based World Food Prize Foundation (WFPF), which awards the annual $250,000 prize, said Mr. Adesina won the prize “for driving change in African agriculture for over 25 years and improving food security for millions across the continent".

President of WFPF Kenneth Quinn clarified that the selection of Adesina, who was formerly Nigeria's Minister of Agriculture from 2011 to 2015, "reflected both his bold reforms and breakthrough achievements in transforming agriculture as Minister of Agriculture in Nigeria".

He pointed out that Mr. Adesina "led a major expansion of commercial bank lending to farmers as Vice President of Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) and as Minister of Agriculture in Nigeria, introduced the E-Wallet system that broke the back of the corrupt elements, who had controlled the fertilizer distribution system for 40 years ". 

Some of the other bold reforms initiated by Mr. Adesina as agriculture minister included creating a program to make Nigeria self-sufficient in rice production, and in making cassava a major cash crop. In 2006, he was also instrumental in organizing the first African Fertilizer Summit in Abuja, Nigeria, which ignited the campaign to spread a new ‘Green Revolution’ across Africa that led to the formation of AGRA.

"The reforms he implemented increased food production by 21 million metric tonnes and attracted 5.6 billion dollars in private sector investments, thus earning him the reputation as the 'Farmer's Minister', " said Mr. Quinn.


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