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RUGA: Southern, Middle Belt leaders demand outright cancellation

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[FILES] Herdsmen

The Southern and Middle Belt Leaders Forum (SMBLF) have demanded outright cancellation of the Ruga Settlements project initiated by the Federal Government.

In a statement yesterday, spokesmen of the forum, Mr. Yinka Odumakin (South-West), Dr. Prof Chigozie Ogbu (South-East), Senator Bassey Henshaw (South-South) and Dr. Isuwa Dogo (Middle Belt), expressed fears that the suspension was a mere ploy to hoodwink the unwary to buy time for more sinister plots.

The leaders lamented that no agency of the Federal Government had reacted to the Arewa thugs who issued a 30-day ultimatum to southerners to allow northern cows have equal rights in the region with their human beings in the North or face serious consequences the same day the suspension was announced.

The statement read: “It is being alleged that there will be moves to repeal the Land Use Act in the suspension period so that the Federal Government can have authority over land, which is currently under the states.

“We therefore call on all our members in the National Assembly to be vigilant of any surreptitious bill that may be introduced to tamper with control of land and thwart such without wasting time.

“The 2014 National Conference debated this issue at length and resolved to retain the Land Use Act in the 1999 Constitution.

“In like manner, they must stonewall the Executive Bill sponsored by President Muhammadu Buhari to establish a Regulatory Framework for the Water Resources Sector in Nigeria, provide for the Equitable and Sustainable Redevelopment, Management, Use and Conservation of Nigeria’s Surface Water and Groundwater Resources and for Related Matter.

In a similar vein, the Supreme Head, Cherubim and Seraphim Unification Church of Nigeria, Dr. Solomon Adegboyega Alao, cautioned President Muhammadu Buhari that the RUGA plan is capable of splitting the country.

The cleric told the President not to ever look into whatever RUGA has to offer but its implication on the peaceful co-existence of Nigeria.

Alao who spoke at a maiden Seraph media summit held at Maba camp ground in Ogun State yesterday, described RUGA project as an issue that could have caused religious and ethnic crises in the country if not properly managed.


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