Nigerians are reacting with bewilderment to the new nickname (Tomato Ebola) by which the Tuta Absoluta pest that is ravaging the country’s tomatoes is called.
The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Mr. Audu Ogbeh yesterday, Tuesday, May 24, 2016 explained to Nigerians that the high cost of tomatoes in Nigeria is caused by the pest, Tuta absoluta, which has caused massive destruction of tomato in farmlands in six states; Jigawa, Kano, Katsina, Kaduna, Plateau and Lagos.
He said, “The pest can also attack even pepper and Irish potato. So we are confronting something quite serious. But the good thing is that we are tackling it right now as experts will commence work immediately. We are bringing the commissioners and governors of states to jointly attack this pest, which, if not dealt with, will create serious problems for food security in our country.”
Nigerians have however flooded the social media (Twitter) with their take on the unpalatable pest and its ridiculous moniker, ‘Tomato Ebola’. Read some of their tweets below…
Every spirit of ‘Tuta Absoluta’ that is affection our Tomato & Causing Tomato Scarcity via Tomato Ebola, I command you to die by fire IJN.
— Kemawilly (@kemawilly) May 25, 2016
its time for us to go back to #Allah. He promised to test us even in our farm produce. Qur’an 2:155-157. Tomato Ebola
— Mkhamis221 (@mkhamis221) May 25, 2016
Tomato Ebola! lol dis govt is as clueless & foolish like Tom in Tom & Jerry. wot abt Tomato HIV?
— sir Ashiedu! (@sir_onpoint) May 25, 2016
If APC & Sai Bubu did not think Governance was a joke how can you explain that a plant disease called ‘Tomato Ebola’ could not be contained
— Ayekooto (@thebardogbamola) May 25, 2016
Tomato Ebola my yansh…….. its funny how media will make you believe what the Govt wants you to believe. All lies pic.twitter.com/vs5WifpPN4
— KHALIFA (@SlimStino) May 25, 2016
Come, how did Nigerians come about the name Tomato Ebola ? Kinda funny!
— Kemi Ariyo (@d_problemsolver) May 25, 2016
Why send experts to Kenya because of tomato Ebola?? Why exactly do we have research institutes??
— Seyon Hun (@Hundeyin1) May 25, 2016
Which one is Tomato Ebola again? Na wa o
— O (@bvmwrx) May 25, 2016
When everyone is worried about Tomato Ebola, but you’re not concerned because ‘Ofe akwu’ is the best substitute 😊😊😊
— Umeh and 99 others (@UmehOMA) May 25, 2016
Tomato Ebola?? Wahz dah one again??? pic.twitter.com/8DcodleUv1
— Horlla (@Iam_Irawo) May 25, 2016
Where are our men of God ? Can’t they gather to pray against tomato Ebola disease?
— Voice Of PH City (@TWEETEST_BOI) May 25, 2016
Having the likes of Lai Mohammed as FG spokesperson has destroyed a lot! What’s ‘tomato ebola’ again? Hian!
— Onome Okumagba (@shirleysmind) May 25, 2016
Tahh wat is “tomato Ebola”? Bcos we now buy 4 tomatoes 4 500H.
— retweeted (@Jr_GeorgeCarter) May 25, 2016
3. The plague of locusts: …..everything growing in the fields and d fruit on d trees. Tomato Ebola. Tuta Absoluta. Ex 10:15 #WickedPharaoh
— Made in Nigeria (@nnamdi2much) May 25, 2016
Tomato Ebola 😂😂😂😂😂
— IYA ONI JERSEY✌✌✌ (@slimzronke) May 25, 2016
1.Tuta absoluta aka Tomato Ebola was severe since 2014.Nothing has being said or done abt it until now. We mst keep Demanding from our Govt.
— Ismail zakari C (@zaksamacool) May 25, 2016
It’s amazing how long it took the media to pick on this tomato crisis only to crawl in & make it sensational by tagging it tomato ebola. RME
— Akeobi Moro (@imaoyani) May 25, 2016
Tomato Ebola. OK we don hear….
— Abodunrin ‘Dayo (@d_dharyor) May 25, 2016
Mr. Lai Muhammad, how many youths will tomato Ebola employ? Please we need more lies from above to give us hope
— Akpos Vincent Bebs (@AVBeeee) May 25, 2016
The bible said it ‘when the wicked is on the throne ppl wil suffer’ hardship upon hardship, what is ‘Tomato Ebola’?
— IJAY (@Bener23) May 25, 2016
After months of hardship, FG has the perfect explanation;. Tomato Ebola. Na this season tomato ebola start?
— Baba Yaga (@Tcheryph) May 25, 2016
For the love of God, which one is Tomato Ebola again? Coupled with this economic Ebola? No be die be dis so?
— S.O. Umoru (@sampsonumoru) May 25, 2016
Tomato ebola can never stop Nigerians from eating tomato.
We’ll just cut out the affected part and cook the rest.
— Lighters44 (@Duron_Mavin) May 25, 2016
Daniel Fayemi for encomium.ng