By Ayo Akinfe
(1) We are the world’s second largest neem producer behind India
(2) However, we have failed to keep proper records of how much we produce annually
(3) Neem, like many other crops such as papaya, cocoyam and guava grows in the wild across Nigeria. We do not have dedicated plantations to grow the crop in a controlled environment
(4) As we speak, India is carrying out significant research into the use of neem (dogonyaro) as an effective cure for coronavirus
(5) Neem is widely grown across northern Nigeria and as far back as 2005, it was estimated that it could generate up to $6bn in export earnings
(6) Why we do not have a neem research facility at one of our northern universities is totally beyond me
(7) By now, the pharmaceutical departments at the universities of maybe Sokoto, Zaria, Maiduguri, Kano, Katsina or Minna should all have concluded programmes to convert neem into a medication drug
(8) I cannot believe that one governor has not spotted this potential and sought to exploit it
(9) Has anybody asked the likes of Pfizer, Bayern, GlaxoSmithKline or Proctor & Gamble to come and open a neem research facility in Nigeria?
(10) For now, all we are doing is cutting neem bark and boiling its leaves. No one is talking about dosages, harmful contents that need to be refined out or manufacturing it into a drug that can be stored. Hmmmmm. Una well done Nigerians!