Herdsmen crisis

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Herdsmen crisis: Open grazing outdated –Ekweremadu

Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweremadu

The Deputy President of the Senate (DSP), Senator Ike Ekweremadu, has advised that to permanently end the herdsmen crisis in Nigeria, the country should urgently adopt ranching and do away with open grazing. According to a statement by his Special Adviser on Media, Mr. UcheAnichukwu, Ekweremadu described open grazing system of cattle rearing as archaic, anachronistic, and out of tune with modern society. He also reiterated his call for the decentralisation of policing in Nigeria and Africa in general, saying that it was the continent’s sure way out of its myriads of security challenges.

The statement said that Ekweremadu canvassed these positions at the House of Commons, Parliament of the United Kingdom (UK), where he delivered a lecture entitled “African Politics: The Dynamics and Lessons”. He, however, explained that the federal government’s only business in ranching would be the provision of policy direction, insisting that land matters and regulation of ranching were the responsibilities of the states.

He said: “Importantly, I believe that ranching is the way to go rather than open grazing. However, it is for the Federal Government to provide the policy direction, while the states take up the challenge because the issue of cattle rearing is a state matter as all lands are vested in the respective states under the Land Use Act in Nigeria.

“The states need to come up with legislations to end open grazing. It is not for them to set up ranches since it is people’s private business. The states should instead come up with agricultural credit schemes that will encourage and support the farmers to set up their ranches.”

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