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“We Should Not Eat Cows That Trekked From Sokoto, Kano” – Governor Akeredolu

By Dayo Johnson, Regional Editor, South-West

ON February 24, Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State clocked one year in office. To mark the occasion, Akeredolu speaks on his achievements and how to stop the rapacious activities of Fulani herdsmen among other national issues.

Many believe that as one of President Muhammadu Buhari’s loyalists, you should have an idea on how to resolve the problem of herdsmen. Are they right?

I don’t know about that aspect of being the President’s loyalist, I don’t know. All I know is that we have problems with herdsmen. My position on herdsmen has been different from many other people. My position is that there is no way we won’t have grazing areas or ranches in all the states of the federation. We have signed the paper but I am not sure we are flagging it off yet. You can call it ranches or grazing area but don’t call it a colony. I said it that if we have it in every state, Ondo can have a minimum of three in different locations. But it is not that you have your cattle and move them to these ranches; that is not the idea. Because if you want to move them, as you are going, the cattle may not know what you call ranch, everything they see on the road they would eat. My own idea is that if we have it in all states, even herdsmen, by the time you interact with them properly, everybody doesn’t want to be permanently nomadic, they want a settled life too. We must discourage nomadism. The company that took our own are going to the North to buy cattle. The solution is to haul the cattle rather than move them by road. So, if I haul the cattle from Kano down here, by the time you take them, you fatten them and, in less than three months, you will make money. If you are able to do that, the people will buy a cow that is healthy, well-fed and big, rather than the one that trekked from Sokoto or Kano. There is a bill we want to pass but we want to look at it very well. It is not colony but we must encourage ranching in every state, not only in the South. Northern states might even have more ranches so that you can go there, buy your cows and haul them here because we are the ones that eat beef. We eat about 10,000 herds of cattle per day in Lagos and, when you have your parties on weekends, the figure goes to about 20,000 herds of cattle per day. So, if they don’t bring the cattle what happens? There are things that would divide us and the same things can also unite us. Why can’t we look at how such things will unite us than divide us? What will assist us most is to have fast trains. If we have them, we can kill the cow in Kano, refrigerate it and bring it to Lagos and people will buy, they don’t have to kill it by themselves. After all we eat frozen chicken and turkey; we don’t know how long it has taken to get to us from the source. So, what stops us if a cow is slaughtered and is kept for three days in a refrigerated train?

Source:- Vanguardngr


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