Northern governors frown on open grazing

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Northern governors

The Northern Governors Forum says the current system of herding conducted mainly through open grazing is no longer sustainable in view of growing urbanisation and population of the country.

The forum disclosed this in a communique issued by its Chairman and Plateau State Governor, Simon Lalong following a virtual Monday emergency meeting held to discuss issues affecting the region and the nation in general.

“Consequently, Forum resolved to aggressively sensitise herdsmen on the need to adapt new methods of herding by ranching or other acceptable modern methods,” the communique read in part.

The northern governors appealed to the Federal Government to support states with grants to directly undertake pilot projects of modern livestock production that will serve as springboard and evidence for breaking resistance to the full implementation of new methods of livestock production.

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The northern governors resolved to engage elders and youths in a robust discussion with a view to dousing the tensed security environment in the north.

“Accordingly, a four-man Committee was put in place to be headed by the Chairman of the Northern Governors Forum,” the communique further read.

On security of the region and the nation, the forum said it noted with concern the growing wave of insecurity in the country particularly as it relates to circulation of unverified video clips on social media portraying violent attacks on persons in some parts of the country.

The governors therefore called on political leaders to segregate between criminality and social groups in their domains with a view to treating criminals as criminals.

They reiterated that it condemned every form of criminality whether from herders, hunters, or farmers occupying forest reserves illegally.

The northern governors also noted with concern the tension generated by the eviction order issued to herdsmen in some parts of the country, expressing concern that this was heating the already fragile security atmosphere with threats of reprisals which they were working assiduously to contain.

These, they said, stressed the urgent need for the Nigerian Governors Forum to meet and discuss the issue holistically with a view to resolving all areas of misunderstanding and conflicts arising from these threats and suspicion for the sake of national unity.

The northern governors called for” restraint from leaders including those in the Southern parts of the country where passions are high.

“Similarly, they called on all the citizens of the north to continue to live in peace with all Nigerians irrespective of their origins and backgrounds.”

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