Ekiti monarchs write Fayemi, reject proposed ranching programme

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Traditional rulers in Ekiti State, under the aegis of Majority Obas of Ekiti Land (MOBEL), have opposed the establishment of ranches proposed by the Ekiti State government under the Federal Government National Livestock Programme.
They said the Federal Government’s proposed plan to acquire land and allegedly give to herdsmen for grazing activities had the potential to cause serious challenges for the host-communities.

The monarchs, in a letter dated March 25, 2021, and addressed to Governor Kayode Fayemi, condemned the Ekiti State’s decision to adopt the project following a preponderance of complaints from subjects both home and abroad.

In the letter, signed by Chairman of the Majority Obas in Ekiti Land, Olomuoke of Omuo-Oke-Ekiti, Oba Vincent Otitoju; Secretary, Onikun of Ikun Amure-Ekiti, Oba Olatunde Olusola, and other 79 monarchs, the traditional rulers cautioned the government against imposing any obnoxious policy on the people, saying ceding lands to herders, whose criminal activities have created panic in the state, would offend the sensibilities of the people, who had been victims of their heinous atrocities.

They vowed not to cede any portion of land in their domains for the proposed grazing reserves, saying: “We are mindful of the security implications and consequences which will be inimical to the security of the people, knowing full well that majority of the populace are predominantly peasant farmers. We are also not unmindful of the antecedents of some of the Fulani herders where they co-habit with their hosts.

“In view of the foregoing, the Majority Obas of Ekiti Land (MOBEL) on behalf of our subjects at home and in Diaspora hereby oppose the proposed programme, which we perceived to be another nomenclature for Rural Grazing Area (RUGA) – the widely rejected land grabbing initiative unacceptable to the subjects.”

Photo of Milford Sound in New Zealand

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