Home News NGO recommends grazing reserves to end farmers, pastoralists’ feud

NGO recommends grazing reserves to end farmers, pastoralists’ feud


Abuja –   Mercy Corps, a UK DFiD funded NGO, has suggested the establishment of grazing reserves to check incessant conflicts between farmers and pastoralists in the country.
Mr Mohammed Tukur, a member of the corps steering committee, said this at the launch of the NGO’s research on the economic cost of conflicts and benefits of peace in Abuja on Thursday.
He said the NGO has identified the focus of the research as effects of farmers and pastoralists conflicts in Benue, Kaduna, Nasarawa and Plateau states.
Tukur explained that pastoralists in a bid to raise livestock move from one place to another, thereby encroaching into farmlands.
He noted that the establishment of grazing reserves would restrict cattle to graze in particular areas without having conflict with farmers.
He, however, said Nigeria would realise not less than N2.3 trillion annually in an atmosphere devoid of rancour and conflicts.
He said other recommendations by the corps to government include strengthening of the nation’s conflicts resolution mechanisms.
Tukur identified community, religious and opinion leaders as the first points of call in the outbreak of conflicts between farmers and herdsmen in rural communities.
He explained that there was need for community engagements to provide ways of resolving such conflicts to pave way for mutual understanding among feuding parties.
Mrs Iveta Ouvy, the corps Country Director, gave the estimate cost of loss by the four states as a result of farmers and pastoralists’ conflicts as N109 million.
Ouvy noted the causes of violence and conflict between the parties as ranging from disputes over the use of farmlands, grazing areas and routes to water points for animals and households.
She noted that such crises had resulted in the loss of lives of many Nigerians, adding that it has further impoverished the masses.
She however called on the federal, state and local governments as well as policy makers to intensify efforts at ensuring lasting solution to the lingering crises.
“The ongoing violence and conflicts often between farmers and pastoralists rarely garner sufficient government, media and donor attention.
“Several researches have revealed that such violence devastates local and national communities.
“Nigeria stands to gain N2.3 trillion annually in total micro economic progress in a scenario of peace between farmers and pastoralists in the four states of Benue, Kaduna, Nasarawa and Plateau alone which represents up to 2.8 per cent of Nigeria GDP,’’ she said.
Ouvy noted that Mercy Corps is a leading humanitarian agency saving and improving lives in the world’s toughest places.
She added that the NGO also helps in fighting poverty, intervening in conflict situations and disasters, among others. (NAN)

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