The Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) has commended Senate President Ahmad Lawan for his determination to address the challenges confronting pastoralists in the country.
The National President of MACBAN, Baba Usman-Ngelzarma, made the commendation in a statement on Monday in Abuja.
Mr Usman-Ngelzarma, who congratulated Mr Lawan on his investiture as the “Champion of Peste Des Petit Ruminants in Nigeria”, said the investiture was an indication of his resolve to support pastoralists in the country.
He said: “While congratulating you for this recognition, it is our prayers that you shouldn’t be deterred nor be distracted in pursuing the right policies for the livestock sub-sector in the country.
“This recognition accorded you is an indication of your resolve to address the challenges confronting pastoralism in the country. It is indeed our collective recognition.”
He said that MACBAN noted with gratitude the encouragement of Mr Lawan’s speech which highlighted the total neglect of the country’s livestock sub-sector.
Mr Usman-Ngelzarma said: “We now find you to be the voice of the voiceless pastoralists in Nigeria who over the years have suffered countless losses without adequate compensation or support from the government or anywhere else.
“MACBAN has been crying for attention for years highlighting this neglect of the livestock sub-sector which is worth trillions of naira, contributing about 29 per cent to Nigeria’s GDP.
“And it had been in a coma as a result of the total neglect from the Federal and States Government.”
Mr Usman-Ngelzarma said that MACBAN was assured that the National Assembly under Mr Lawan would look into the lack of support being faced by pastoralists.
“Especially, the poor budgeting that has stunted the livestock sector from growth and working effectively.
“In the last eight years, over 10,000 pastoralists were killed and over two million families displaced as a result of banditry, cattle rustling, kidnapping and general insecurity in the country.
“The continuing alleged violence against pastoralists in some states is not only condemnable but totally unacceptable,” he added.
He, therefore, urged security agencies to take drastic measures against alleged killings by members of vigilance groups and other ethnic militias against pastoralists.
“With a projected population of about 16 million registered voters, pastoralists are a voice to be reckoned with in deciding who leads this great country for the betterment of all,” Mr Usman-Ngelzarma, added.
Source: Peoples Gazette
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