VP Yemi Osinbajo denies supervising establishment of Ruga Fulani herdsmen settlements—
The office of VP Yemi Osinbajo has denied claims it supervises the establishment of cattle Fulani settlements known as “Ruga” in parts of the country.
The General Secretary of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria MACBAN, Baba Uthman Ngelzarma, had said Osinbajo’s office was in charge of implementing the programme nationwide.
“This Ruga settlement model is a component part of the livestock development and transformation plan that is being implemented under the Office of the Vice-President. It is a component part of it. All must agree with me that the crisis we are facing today has become a multi-dimensional one and so the approach must also be holistic. It was the desire of the Federal Government to take a holistic approach that gave birth to the Ruga settlement model and it is not only for Fulani herders.” he said
Reacting to his claim, Laolu Akande, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media & Publicity, Office of the Vice President in a statement released on Friday June 28th, said the Ruga initiative is different from the National Livestock Transformation Plan approved by State governors under the auspices of the National Economic Council (NEC) chaired by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, SAN.
The statement recalled that NEC on January 17, 2019, approved the plan based on the recommendations of a Technical Committee of the Council chaired by Governor Dave Umahi of Ebonyi State.
Other State Governors on the committee and Working Group of NEC, its said are those from Adamawa, Kaduna, Benue, Taraba, Edo, Plateau, Oyo and Zamfara – mostly the frontline states in the Farmer-Herder crises.
The statement explained that the National Livestock Transformation Plan (NLTP) 2019-2028 is a programme to be implemented in seven pilot states of Adamawa, Benue, Kaduna, Plateau, Nasarawa, Taraba and Zamfara (as decided by NEC in January), being States in the frontlines of the Farmer-Herder crises.
Afterwards, six other states have indicated readiness to also implement the plan. They are Katsina, Kano, Kogi, Kwara, Ondo, and Edo states, the statement said.
“The plan has six pillars through which it aims to transform the livestock production system in Nigeria along market-oriented value chain while ensuring an atmosphere of peace and justice.
“The six key pillars include economic investment, conflict resolution, justice and peace, humanitarian relief and early recovery, human capital development and cross-cutting issues such as gender, youth, research and information and strategic communication.
“In all the Federal Government will not impose on any State government regarding its land.”