Nigerians are currently having to deal with two very unpalatable plights among many others; rise in fuel price and hike in tomato price. As if the increased fuel price is not enough, Tomato leaf miner or Tuta Absoluta has decided to wreak havoc on Nigerian’s beloved and needed tomatoes, making their prices rise by over 200% nationwide.

The Tuta Absoluta is a moth that is ravaging 80% of tomato farms in Northern Nigeria, especially Kaduna where most tomato production takes place. This has led to a hike in the prices of tomatoes across the country. It is so appalling that a state of emergency has been declared in the tomato sector in Kaduna Sate. While the Kaduna State government is trying to deal with the pest, Nigerians are lamenting and have even taken to social media to air their feelings.

At a time when Nigerians are lacking in tomatoes, Spain is prepping for its annual tomato fight in August. The tomato fight as it is blandly put around social media is a festival in Spain called La Tomatina. It involves 20,000 participants from all over the world engaging in an enormous tomato fight. It is estimated that 100 tons of tomatoes will be thrown during the event.

Though this is fun and usual for Spain, Nigerians have considered it an enormous waste of tomatoes and have taken to posting photographs of La Tomatina in Spain.

The tweets seem funny, but they actually express the hurt and sadness of Nigerians at the arrant waste of tomatoes at a time when a nation across the pacific are in dire need of the comodity to ease the unbearable pain they are currently experiencing.

Tomatoes is so important to Nigerians that it can be found in virtually all their native of dishes. Jollof rice, stew etc.

We do hope something is done on time.

Author: Ope Adedeji