The Central Bank of Nigeria and the Rice farmers Association of Nigeria have concluded plans to distribute 27,000 metric tonnes of rice paddies directly to millers nationwide on Thursday, to renew their move to address the rising cost of food prices in the Nigerian market. A statement from the CBN on Tuesday said the direct allocation from RIFAN warehouses across 16 states of the federation was sequel to the earlier sale of paddy aggregated as loan repayment under the Anchor Borrowers’ Programme to millers from the rice pyramids unveiled in Niger, Kebbi, Gombe and Ekiti states. The acting Director, Corporate Communications Department, CBN, Osita Nwanisobi, said Kaduna State had been selected as the key location for the paddy allocation exercise, which would be done simultaneously in the states that recorded the highest quality of rice harvests during the last farming season. He said the new strategy was in line with the bank’s mandate of ensuring price stability and its focus of being a people-centered central bank. He also expressed optimism that the allocation of the paddies would trigger a decline in the prices of rice in the Nigerian market, boost availability, and ultimately check the activities of middlemen seeking to create artificial scarcity along the supply chains.