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Seye Oyeleye: Ending open grazing key to tackling farmers-herders crisis

Seye Oyeleye: Ending open grazing key to tackling farmers-herders crisis
January 27
10:42 2021

Seye Oyeleye, director-general of the Development Agenda for Western Nigeria (DAWN), says ending open grazing is key to tackling the recurring farmers-herders crisis in the country.

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Oyeleye spoke when he featured on Parrot Xtra Hour On Radio, a programme on Oluyole 98.5 FM in Ibadan, Oyo state.

Nigeria has witnessed several clashes between herders and farmers often caused by the destruction of crops by cattle.

Speaking on the show, the DAWN DG said governments at all levels in Nigeria should make urgent plans to stop open grazing, adding that there is no rationale for such practice in the 21st century.

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“Governments at all levels and the stakeholders in the agricultural sector should accept and embrace modern methods of cattle ranching to solve the recurrent problem of collision between farmers and herders,” he said.

Oyeleye also backed the clamour for restructuring, adding that the country, as currently constituted, is not a truly federal state.

He said the powers given to the federal government by the constitution has made it too powerful, noting that this has not helped the states.

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Buttressing his point, Oyeleye condemned the 1955 railways act that gave only the federal government the exclusive rights to the building of railways.

He also commended governors of the southwest region for the establishment of the Western Nigerian Security Network code-named Amotekun in spite of the initial challenges that greeted the introduction of the outfit.

He reiterated the commitment of DAWN to fostering unity among the six states of the southwest region.

“Prior to the coming of DAWN, the six states did not have any formal avenue to meet. The coming of the commission created an official platform for the states to come together on a regular basis to work towards economic development,” he added.

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According to him, the inclusion of Lagos into the O’dua Investment Company after it was initially excluded by past western states’ leaders was indicative of the growing unity in the region.

Oyeleye, however, said that the commission is open to receiving support from well-meaning Nigerians and private sectors in terms of technical and financial help.

He said southwest governors should also do more to ensure that the commission is well funded.

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