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‘Farmers, herders’ conflict depleting animal population’

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Herdsmen. PHOTO: GOOGLE.COM/SEARCH?

The Federal Government has raised concern that the increasing farmers/herders’ conflict across the country was depleting animal population.

Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Bukar Hassan, who stated this in Abuja yesterday during the Livestock Emergency Guidelines and Standards (LEGS) workshop for livestock experts in Nigeria, said the potential promises of the sub-sector were being threatened with pervasive conflicts in the Middle Belt, North-East and other parts of the country.

He expressed worry that the waves of destruction and demographic dislocation are so huge and unprecedented that the livestock husbandry set-up are significantly disrupted with animal population being totally wiped out in many instances, adding that cattle rustling and allied crimes are some of the crises.

Hassan, represented by the Director, Animal Husbandry, Mr. John Taiwo, said the LEGS programme by the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) was aimed at saving lives and livelihood through two key strategies of assisting in the identification of the most appropriate livelihood interventions in emergencies and providing standards, indicators and guiding notes for the interventions based on good practice.

In another development, Agricultural Policy Research Network (APRNet) has warned that without appropriate policy implementation, the worsening problem of food shortage and hunger in the country may not end soon.

APRNet President, Anthony Onoja, who stated this yesterday at the ninth agricultural policy research seminar in Abuja, noted that issues like climate change, poor finance of agriculture research and herdsmen violent clashes with farmers in different parts of the country may “exacerbate the already lingering food deficit problem if not addressed now, especially using a multi-stakeholders’ approach.”

Onoja said poor access to finance by farmers and other issues in the agricultural sector might result in the sector not meeting the need of Nigerians.


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