The Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria, MACBAN, has disclosed that the office of the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo was helping herdsmen to create the Ruga settlement across the country.
This was disclosed by the General Secretary of MACBAN, Baba Uthman Ngelzarma, while appearing on Channels Television programme Sunrise Daily.
Recall that Buhari government had disclosed that it was working towards establishing Ruga settlements for herdsmen in 12 pilot states nationwide.
Mohammadu Umar, the Permanent Secretary in the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, made this known in Abuja recently.
However, Ngelzarma assured that Nigerians would fully enjoy the benefits of animal husbandry when the programme has been successfully completed.
Ngelzerma also maintained that not only Fulani men were herdsmen.
He said, “This Ruga settlement model is a component part of the livestock development and transformation plan that is being implemented under the Office of the Vice-President. It is a component part of it.
“All must agree with me that the crisis we are facing today has become a multi-dimensional one and so the approach must also be holistic. It was the desire of the Federal Government to take a holistic approach that gave birth to the Ruga settlement model and it is not only for Fulani herders.
“In southern Kaduna, there are natives who are also herders. Even in Plateau, there are other groups that are herders. It was intended for the herders as part of efforts by the government to come up with an economic model of solving this crisis.
“This is an integrated settlement that will bring about the production of pasture grass, water, schools, markets, meat and milk processing and where it can create a sub-sector of the economy. This is something that if done properly, it will create a lot of employment.”
Ngelzerma appealed to Nigerians to support the model and give peace a chance, stressing that only states that approved of the model would have Ruga settlements.
“It is a misunderstood concept to some people. The lands are under the control of governors. This model is a trial. It will be done in 12 states to see if it can work or not. Even we, from the side of the herders, have our reservations,” he added.