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Grazing reserves ready in 24 months, says Ogbeh


Audu Ogbeh, Minister for Agriculture and Rural Development

Audu Ogbeh, Minister for Agriculture and Rural Development

Agriculture and Rural Development Minister, Audu Ogbeh, yesterday disclosed that the proposed 415 grazing reserves would be ready in 24 months from now.

Speaking when he appeared before the House of Representatives to help explore the means to diversify the economy, he explained that he would commence the process of putting the grazing reserves in place once the 2016 budget was signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The minister disclosed that nine state governments have already offered five thousand (5000) hectares of land each in a bid to achieve the goal while plans are afoot to import specialised grass from Brazil for the grazing reserves that will be mainly situated in the northern part of the country.

Decrying the poor funding of the agricultural sector, ‎Ogbeh rued the incessant clashes between herdsmen and farmers with the catastrophic consequences of loss of lives and property worth billions of naira across the country.

Insisting that the much touted grazing routes would not provide the panacea to the problem, he argued that but for the neglect of the agricultural sector over the years, the clashes between herdsmen and farmers would not have arisen.

The minister who admonished the lawmakers to contribute by taking to farming blamed the elites for the neglect of the agricultural sector over the years.

He noted: “The crises must be brought to an end as soon as possible. We have to reduce the roaming, we have to correct the view that people like to wonder around, and we have to disabuse the idea that the Fulanis have a culture to move around and sleep in the bush and their children to be subjected to snakes bites. It is not true.

“When they roam let everyone of us ask the question what are they looking for? They are looking for grass and water. So if you provide them pasteur in strategic locations and water and we give them other services, I do not think the fulani man would want to walk from his base to Enugu or Lagos.

Unfortunately a large number of the fulanis causing this problem are not even Nigerian Fulanis. Most of those arrested don’t speak a single Nigerian language. Some of them are from Mali, Senegal and even Mauritania armed with AK 47 riffles procured from Libya.”

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  • Osanebi Osakuni

    Audu Ogbe on the sermon of a slave. What a shame?

  • mark asema

    Ogbe, a complete sell-out.

  • adolphus uchenabo

    Ogbe,you are rubbing salt to injury.

  • Izonebi

    Have you guys read and understood what Ogbe is saying or just out of ignorance choose to insult the man?

    These are key excerpts from his statement;

    “Insisting that the much touted grazing routes would not provide the panacea to the problem, he argued that but for the neglect of the agricultural sector over the years, the clashes between herdsmen and farmers would not have arisen.”

    Clearly he is against the setting up of grazing routes which encourages roaming and would prefer the cattle rearers to be stationed in these reserves, this model was adopted by the Brazilian government for its cattle breeders. He has stated that there would have been no clashes if we had these reserves or ranches.

    The reserves are not to be set up even in the South but in the North, so what is all the angst against the man who is looking at a solution to a problem that has existed for decades?

    Some Nigerians can be so tiresome.

    • emmanuel kalu

      There are quota from him saying that the reserves would be started in the north and then move to the south. There are two problem, cattle rearing is a business, so why are we giving Fulani cattle men free land? why then are we also importing this grass when the Fulani cattle men are moving south? it means they can find the food in the south or the grass in the south. why don’t you import the grass from the south?

      • Izonebi

        please where are those quotes? I do not do ‘hearsays’ and conjectures. The reserves from his comments are to be set up in the North with the Governors in those states already willing to partner with the Federal Government to do this, and what makes you think the cattle rearers will not be charged for using those reserves?

        If this will stop cattle rearers roaming about and end the historic face-off between farmers and nomads then it deserves commendation.

        Stop all the whining if you are not providing any suggestion superior to this from Audu Ogbeh.

        • Victor Lamai

          You are doing’conjectures’ when you assume the use of grazing reserves will be paid for by the nomads when you do not have empirical evidence on such .Please stop trying too hard to sound intelligent Izonebi

    • Anny

      Who acquires grazing reserves? The government? For who? Now also answer this – who acquires shops for trading for the rest of us? So why should government reward those who have murdered better people than them? Those cattle merchants should do ranches with intensive supply of the needs of cattle and the social amenities and let the rearers live there and pay taxes like any other law abiding citizen. In some states people pay taxes for bicycle but other states do not want to pay tax for a lot of cattle that eat crops of farmers and kill their owners?

      • Izonebi

        who builds those shops that traders now rent or lease? So what makes you think the reserves will be free?

  • emmanuel kalu

    This is madness, why should free land or free business input be giving to this folks at the cost of other tax payers. how many businessmen have being given free land, how many farmers are given free land? yes the Fulani herdsmen should not be allowed to roam, the should own and operate ranches at their own expense, not the taxpayers. This is pure madness.

  • Basil Ogbanufe

    “Most of those arrested don’t speak a single Nigerian language.” What about the ones that speak Nigerian language? It is the rat in the house that told the rat in the forest about the meat in the house.

  • Ify Onabu

    Nonsense. How can ‘foreigners’ carry arms openly in Nigeria and the government does not know what to do with them? Are we safe in the hands of this government? Why do they keep giving lame excuses? How many Nigerians carry arms in Mali, Senegal and Mauritania?