Ebonyi PDP Chieftain Condemns Implementation of RUGA Settlement in South-East
By Chibueze Victor, Abakaliki
Ebonyi PDP Chieftain, Chief Linus Abaa Okorie, has called Federal Government to change its decision to establish RUGA Settlements across the country.
Chief Okorie was speaking on the heels of the intending outcomes on the Federal Government’s decision to establish RUGA settlements in the south East and South South zones.
According to him, Federal Government has announced through the Federal Ministry of Agriculture its decision to establish RUGA settlements across the country, with its believe that the scheme would help to end herders and farmers clashes in the country.
However, Okorie who was the immediate past Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Agricultural Colleges and Institutions, hinted that, the scheme if implemented would increase more security challenges all over the country.
The former Honourable Lawmaker who represented Ohaozara/Onicha/Ivo Federal Constituency in the Green Chamber between 2011-2019, suggested that, the Federal Government should embark on an effective comprehensive reform of the nomadic culture and its economics.
He further recommended the repackaging of the ranching model as against RUGA, insisting that ranching was the best solution to adopt in ending the herders and farmers clashes in Nigeria.
He in the statement by his Media aide , Prince Chijioke Agwu, availed to newsmen said, there were many successful ranching models to copy from, calling on the government to package an appropriate ranching stimulus and economics to drive the goldmine.
He also advised the South East Governors not to allow the implementation of the scheme in the zone if the Federal government fails to drop the scheme, noted that any contrary view to the implementation of the scheme was neither politics nor criticism of President Muhammadu Buhari’s led administration but for the sake of national stability and development.
‘I support the comprehensive reform of the nomadic culture and economics, including any stimulus to accelerate their trade. But RUGA is no way an acceptable option. It’s crisis waiting to explode.
“Cattle ranching remains the solution and there are many successful models to ape from. The FG should package an appropriate ranching stimulus and economics to drive that dormant goldmine. But it’s a NO NO to RUGA. And this has nothing to do with politics and PMB. It’s about economics, it’s about national stability and security. Its about not creating more problems trying to solve one.
“Any State governor, especially in the South that yields land for RUGA may never recover from its negative effects even after office and this is no rocket science.
“Above all, a forceful implementation of the RUGA policy would certainly propel a spiral to national crisis and instability.
“Political, natural, religious and opinion leaders owe to the nation the urgent duty to speak up on this matter and to offer ameliorative advice to Mr President at this time and help him find reason to abandon the policy because of the national interest.
“Let’s please rethink it, no one would lose any face. Let’s implement ranching instead with appropriate incentives to address inherent fears and capacity gaps of the herders and would-be investors”, he suggested.