Billy Graham Abel, Yola
The Vice President of Nigeria, Yemi Osinbajo has flagged-off the National Livestock Transformation Plan (NLTP) at Gongoshi grazing reserve, at Mayo Belwa, Adamawa state.
Osinbajo said, the plan is a win-win for the people of the state and would provide a platform for the resolution of conflict and improve agricultural output in the country.
Osinbajo said, “At the height of the farmer-herders crisis, the national economic council constitute committee to find solutions to the problem, the federal government merely support the project.
“The plan that was born out of the committee is the NLTP.
“It is a plan that hopes to birth tailored made ranches where cattle are bred, meat and diary products are produced using modern livestock methods.
“This solves the problem of open cattle grazing into farmlands, it ensures a practical response to the pressure of water and pasture affected by forces of climate change.”
Osinbajo added that, “It provides a modern meat and diary and in many cases, integrated crop farming.
“For example, in this Gongoshi reserve, there is a crop farming alongside cattle and ranch farming that will go on here.
“The unique feature of the NLTP is that each participating state will determine its own model.
“I wish to emphasise as the governor has said, this is not Ruga or Ruga settlement.
“Ruga was a plan launched by the ministry of agriculture and it caused a problem when it was perceived as a plan designed to seized lands for herders.
“The NLTP is the one endorsed by all governors and it can only be implemented with the full participation and consent of the governor and the people of the state, no state can be forced to participate
“I must congratulate the governor of your state who almost immediately upon his assumption of office consulted the National Economic Council, farmer-herders crisis committee secretariat, in order to understand the plan and how to implement it here in Adamawa state.
“This is the right approach.”
He said, “Adamawa state has experienced crisis as a result of farmer-herders crisis resulting in the destruction of lives and property.
“The introduction of NLTP is a win-win for the state and its people.
“The plan would provide the basis for peaceful co-existance and jobs for many and a mechanism for resolving disputes of various kinds.
“We have here seven hundred and seventy two pastoral families and one hundred and ninety crop farmers here in this community.”
Speaking at the occasion, the Adamawa state governor, Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri, said the project is not Ruga amd it has been designed to move the state from the age long subsistence farming to a more advanced system that adds value to the production chain.
The flag-off was however marred with reactions from communities that have borne the brunt of Herders attack in the past pointing out that the implementation of the NLTP must necessarily include plans to halt killing by the killer herdsmen group.
Among the highlight of the event is the commissioning of a fleet of sixty Hilux trucks and fifty motorcycles for the Operation Faruata in the state, an operation designed to clamp down on criminals and criminality in the state.