Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has lamented the rising cost of diesel, stressing that it has adversely affected his fish business.
He stated this on Tuesday during a southwest fish farmers’ congress at the presidential library (OOPL) in Ogun State. According to Obasanjo, the high diesel price may turn fish farmers.
The former president estimated that a kilogram of fish costs N1,400 to produce while putting the diesel price at N800 a litre.
“I am already sweating, and if the situation does not go down, anybody that is using diesel, I don’t know your calculation, my calculation is that I cannot produce a kilo of fish with less than N1400. That’s about what it costs as of today. So, if I sell my fish around N1,400, I cannot make a profit,” the ex-President said in a statement by his media aide, Kehinde Akinyemi.
He said farmers must not sell less than N1,500 as anything short of that would lead to “outright loss”.
Obasanjo added, “If we don’t come together as an association, nationally, we will sink individually. If we come together, we will swim and survive together,” he said.
“And while we are working on coming together, I thought the situation has arisen whereby we have to do something urgently.
“The price of diesel has gone sky high because the management of this country is not what it should be. And it is as simple as that.
“Then, what will happen is that particularly those of us who have to use a bit of diesel in producing fish, we will completely go bankrupt, and when that happens, Nigerians will still have to eat fish.”
“And you will go jobless, poor, and indigent. So, what do we have to do? To come together… we want to sustain fish production, and we must be able to take care of those who are going to eat and those who are producing.”
According to the former President, fish production would be out of reach, and “then people will be producing fish outside Nigeria and dump it here”.