Kebbi State Governor Atiku Bagudu on Thursday argued that mapping out grazing routes will help to identify the scale of the herder-farmer crisis.
President Muhammadu Buhari recently ordered a committee to review 368 grazing sites across 25 states in the country to determine the levels of encroachment.
Critics have faulted the President’s directive, noting that ranching is a more viable alternative to open grazing.
READ ALSO: Kaduna Govt Bans Transportation Of Livestock
But, speaking on Channels Television’s Politics Today, Mr Bagudu said the President’s directive does not preclude the idea of ranching.
“The committee is to identify grazing routes and work with states and map them. It is not to recover grazing routes, it is to identify the scale of the problem,” Mr Bagudu said.
“Mr President is interested in an audit of grazing reserves. It is a voluntary and collaborative thing with the states.
“People say we have spoken about ranching. Yes, but what is a ranch? Ranching does not take place in the air, it takes place on a piece of land.
“Ranches are as big as grazing reserves. In some countries like Australia, some ranches are bigger than some Nigerian states.
“So how do you know what’s available, what can be supported to host those roving, herding communities who need help to modernise?”
When asked why the President appeared to have taken a special interest in helping herders modernise since it is a private business, Mr Bagudu said the issue is a “shared public interest.”
“We have interest historically to make our farmers do better,” he said. “That’s why we have all kinds of programs and extension services, so our farmers can do better. And it is a desirable public goal.
“So, historically, we have invested more in the farming sector, to the disadvantage of both fishing and animal husbandry.
“We want to help them (herders) modernise so Nigeria can benefit and generate more value from this important sector.
“If we can support those in the banking sector with five trillion to save the banks from collapsing, I don’t think we are doing any disservice to support our farmers, support millions in the animal husbandry sector and support our fishing communities as well.”
President Muhammadu Buhari has endorsed the establishment of the Nigerian Diaspora Investment Trust fund (NDITF), a private sector investment window…
President Muhammadu Buhari has mourned the demise of Ernest Shonekan, the Nigerian leader who headed the Interim National Government, saying…
A court in Uganda on Tuesday charged a prominent author and government critic with "disturbing" the country's President Yoweri Museveni…
Ahead of the 2023 general elections, the former lawmaker representing Kaduna Central in the 8th National Assembly, Senator Shehu Sani,…
Former Abia State Governor, Orji Uzor Kalu, has filed an application at the Federal High Court in Abuja seeking…
A member of the 8th Senate from Kaduna Central, Senator Shehu Sani, says bandits have become a state within a…