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Wednesday, 20 April 2016

PARE Seeks N 5 billion to Establish Grazing Reserves in Northern Nigeria


By Afolabi Ogunde on June 7, 2012
Pastoral Resolve (PARE), a non-governmental organization focused on solving the perennial conflict between farmers and pastoralists occasioned by poor access to land and water, is looking to raise N 5 billion in order to establish six grazing centers in the Northern part of the country.
The President of PARE Alhaji Ahmed Joda said the pilot states would be Adamawa, Bauchi, Benue, Kogi, Nassarawa and Niger States. He explained that population explosion and desert encroachment had led to scarce availability of pastoral lands in the North causing nomadic herdsmen to move southwards in the search of land and water for their livestock. This southern movement often leads to ethnic conflict based on economic hardship.
Alhaji Joda said governments lack of will to enforce grazing laws only compounded the problem further.
“These problems have their genesis in the fact that grazing laws are deliberately ignored, thereby encouraging encroachment of gazetted grazing reserves.
“Lack of political will and total neglect of the livestock sub-sector by the various governments has resulted in massive encroachment into both gazetted, proposed grazing reserves and blockage of stock routes in the country.

‘’The policy and legal vacuum serve to exacerbate the conflict between pastoralists and crop producers, a situation that continues to escalate over much of the northern and the middle-belt states of the country.”
Joda said the tension between farmers and herdsmen constituted a threat to peace and national security.
“I can see no peace, if we don’t solve this problem. As important as oil and the manufacturing sectors are, the livestock industry provides nutrition and jobs, among other economic benefits.
“At the rate we are going, there will be no grazing land and this might result to a war along ethnic and religious lines.
“If we have peace and stability, we do not need security checks which drains the national economy, if we can develop the livestock industry and eliminate tension associated with it,’’ he said.
According to PARE the livestock industry has the potential to generate $20 billion but currently generates only $ 1.5 billion.

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