Donated lands will not be converted for RUGA, NALDA boss assures
Director General of National Agricultural Land Development Authority (NALDA), Paul Ikonne, has clarified that the agency is not interested in taking over people’s lands but rather ensuring youth empowerment and food security.
The clarification followed insinuations that NALDA was taking over lands from states for development of the controversial Rural Grazing Area (RUGA) settlements across the country.
“The issue of taking land from people and using it for RUGA is totally misleading, and it is not what we should dwell on now. What we should focus on is: how do we achieve food security because everybody needs food to survive, whether opposition or no opposition, religion or no religion, tribe or no tribe? Everybody needs food,” he said.
Ikonne made the disclosure in Fufore Local Government Area of Adamawa State, at the weekend, while receiving land donations for wheat production.
He said the aim of President Muhammadu Buhari is to empower farmers and raise more millionaires through agriculture.
“When we take possession of this land, we would allocate it to the indigenes, people from your community that you would nominate. Our job is to put them through on dry season farming, provide all the input and all the support they need,” he said.