- The conversation surrounding open grazing is still ongoing nationwide
- Pressure is mounting on the federal government to ban open grazing across the country
- Experts say the old practice of pastoralism has done more harm than good for Nigeria
The convener of a pressure group, Kwara Must Change, Abdulrazak Hamzat has stated that open grazing should be banned all over Nigeria.
The Abuja-based activist made the statement in an exclusive interview with Legit.ng while reacting to the ban on open grazing across southern Nigeria by the Southern Governors Forum.
According to him, open grazing is not only archaic, it is unbefitting of any civilized nation in the 21st century.
“The herders-farmers clashes that have also become a regular part of the open grazing challenge have made its ban even more inevitable.
“So, banning open grazing is not only right and proper, it is just one end of the issue. There's a need to go beyond just banning open grazing, to creating a real enterprise industry around the sector, through adequate investment and mass sensitization of the stakeholders in the industry.
“However, while I am in support of the ban on open grazing, I think the ban should not come from just the southern governors, it should be banned across the 36 states, including the FCT, not only by the state governors but also by the federal government.
“This is so because, if we have a problem, we should be solving it together, not one party solving it against the other, thereby creating a sense of we against them.”
He added that the blanket ban by the Southern Governors Forum gives the impression that Nigeria has been divided along regional lines.
“In my opinion, the ban from the southern governors sends a wrong signal of regional division in the country, which is not a good thing.
“Instead of the Southern Governors Forum, Nigeria's Governors Forum should have been the one spearheading the initiative. Nonetheless, the action was inevitable.”
Recall that the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) had earlier said northern governors should address the ban by their southern counterparts.
National secretary of MACBAN, Baba Othman Ngelzarma declared that northern governors must rise up to the challenge by working out a solution of their own that will be generally acceptable.
The governor said that anyone casting aspersion on the resolutions of the forum towards a better Nigeria did not mean well for the nation.