MACBAN says it supports the call for an end to open grazing, but herders should be provided with settlements.
The Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) has called on the Federal Government to provide settlements for herdsmen across the country to put an end to the long-standing conflict with farmers.
Decades-long conflict over access and control of land between the nomadic cattle herders and local farming communities has led to thousands of lives lost, and millions worth of property damage.
Ethnic tension caused by the conflict led the governors of all six states in the south west to ban open grazing of cattle across the region last month.
Kano State governor, Abdullahi Ganduje, also days ago threw his weight behind a ban on open grazing across the entire country so that herders can settle peacefully with their cattle.
MACBAN’s National General, Usman Baba-Ngelzarma, told Sahara Reporters on Monday, February 1, 2021 that the association is in support of the call for an end to open grazing, but that the government must provide a soft landing for herders.
He said, “We are already agitating for a solution to this problem – settlement, let the Federal Government come with the settlement model.
“The pastoralists cannot continue moving, looking for pasture; that era is coming to an end considering the increase in population against the land that does not increase.
“There has to be planning on the part of the government for both pastoralists and farmers to coexist. Part of this is to create a model that will settle pastoralists in one place.”
The Federal Government has in the past few years floated a few programmes that proposed ranching alternatives to open grazing.
Three years ago, the National Economic Council (NEC) presented the National Livestock Transformation Plan (2018-2027) to provide ranches for herders, and also rebuild communities devastated in the past by the conflict.