Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has assured that the Federal Government will not seize land from states for the implementation of the National Livestock Transformation Plan (NLTP).
Osinbajo gave the assurance at the opening session of an International Conference on Patriotism, Security, Governance and National Development.
A statement issued by his spokesman, Laolu Akande, informed that the event was organised by the Global Patriot Newspaper in collaboration with the Nigerian Consulate in New York and Nigeria in Diaspora Organisation, (NIDO) New Jersey Chapter.
While explaining the initiative, the Vice President said “the NLTP is a comprehensive strategy for addressing farmer/herder conflict essentially by encouraging interested states to establish cattle ranches.”
“The crucial point here is that no community or state is compelled in any shape or form to give land for ranching. Ranching is essentially a business. NLTP is not a land grab in any way. Every state is completely responsible for its land. The Federal Government cannot go to any state and take any land.
“Already 22 states have indicated interest and pilots, with the support of the Netherlands government, are ongoing in 4 states of Adamawa, Nasarawa, Plateau and Gombe. If we are able to execute the NLPT, we will be able to see an end to the farmer-herder conflict because the goal is to make livestock breeders more sedentary and derive more financial benefits.”
He said as part of efforts to address the perennial crisis between farmers and herders, the federal and state governments are committed to the implementation of the NLTP as developed by the consensus of governors under the auspices of the National Economic Council (NEC).
Osinbajo maintained that the task of building a society desired by all Nigerians “is exerting” and requires the contribution of all as the challenge for everyone is “to build, not to destroy, to add to, not to take away.”
Speaking on the need for citizens to unite in building a better society, the Vice President said “the task of nation-building is exerting and may even appear messy as the process continues, especially in a multi-ethnic and multi-religious nation like Nigeria. It challenges all values, patience and tolerance of citizens, it may even be costly. It is a challenge thrown to everyone, to build, not to destroy, to add to, not to take away.”
While addressing security concerns, the Vice President restated his advocacy for the decentralization of the Police Force.
According to him, “We must accept that there is a need for greater decentralization of the police force. I have been a frequent advocate of state policing and I believe this certainly must be the way we must go. The National Assembly is in a position to consider some of the proposals that have gone to them for the purposes of devolving more powers to the states for security purposes and for addressing the security challenges.”