Taraba State Governor, Darius Ishaku, on Tuesday said the Federal Government should cancel RUGA program, rather than suspending it. Speaking with re
Taraba State Governor, Darius Ishaku, on Tuesday said the Federal Government should cancel RUGA program, rather than suspending it.
Speaking with reporters at the Government House, Jalingo, Ishaku said the scheme was a form of colonialism and that its suspension was not enough, as it still raises suspicion.
“Ranching is the best modern practice of breeding cattle and solving the farmers/herders conflicts,” he said.
Lau, Zing, Ibi and Sarduana local government areas of the state had been earmarked for Ruga. But the protests in many states, including Benue and Taraba, as well as outrage from well-meaning individuals, informed the scheme’s suspension.
He said some youths in the state had described the scheme as a threat to tribes in Taraba state and the nation at large, adding that herdsmen troubling the state were aliens with an ulterior motive to grab the lands of the original inhabitants.
Ishaku, who officially kicked against the suspended scheme said “Ruga is colonialism; it is not about cattle; it is not even about grasses. It should not only be suspended but should also be cancelled completely.
“The whole Ruga scheme should be cancelled. You can’t do a Ruga in the entire country. I don’t accept it. It is not workable, and it will not work in Taraba state.
“Already, I have in place the Anti-Open Grazing Law in Taraba state that prohibits open grazing but encourages ranching. And we are making a lot of progress on ranching.
“I have submitted a request to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for us (Taraba) to be given a loan for us to do the ranching, but the CBN has refused to approve it, for reasons I don’t know.
“Otherwise, I would have showcased what ranching is in the state. It is the best form of practice in modern days, if indeed you are talking about cattle, grasses and grazing.
“But I don’t think the federal government are talking about cattle; I don’t agree that they are talking about grasses. They are talking about something else: colonisation,” he said.