South-East traditional rulers favour cattle ranches to curb farmers-herdsmen fights


 Members of the South-East Council of Traditional Rulers has called for the establishment of cattle ranches by private investors to curb incessant hostilities between herdsmen and their host communities.
The Chairman of the council, Dr Eberechi Dick, made the call on Friday in Enugu when some traditional rulers in the zone paid a solidarity visit on Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State.
Dick said that the Federal Government would be doing a disservice to the unity of the nation if it dabbled into the creation of grazing reserves across the country.
He said that monarchs in the zone were pained by the killing of innocent residents of Nimbo in Uzo Uwani Local Government Area of Enugu State.
“We are here on a solidarity visit and to console you over the sad and unfortunate incident that took place in Nimbo community.
“We also note with regret the failure of security agencies to timely intervene in the incursion of the suspected herdsmen,” he said.
The traditional ruler appealed to the Federal Government to urgently take necessary measures to disarm all herdsmen who were reported to be heavily armed.
“Herdsmen should not be allowed to carry arms apart from the traditional bows and arrows.
“On the rumoured grazing bill, our position is that cattle rearing is a private business and that government should not dabble into it as this will mean favouring one part of the country unduly.
“There should be cattle ranches established by private cattle owners where they are convenient to be established just as it is done all over the world,” he said.
Dick commended Enugu State Government for the mature and proactive measures it put in place to ensure the incident did not degenerate.
Responding, Ugwuanyi described the visit as reassuring and confirmed the sense of brotherhood in the people of the zone, particularly in times of distress.
The governor said he was confident that his administration had put measures in place to avert future occurrence through the reactivation of the neighbourhood watch in line with extant laws of the state.
“We have put in a holistic approach in checking incidences of the herdsmen and other infractions in the state and are confident that we will prevent future occurrence,” Ugwuanyi said. 

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