Determined to ensure peaceful co-existence among every interest group across Ondo State, Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu (SAN) has adopted feed lot system for grazing of cattle in the state.
The Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Agriculture and Agric-business, Mr. Akin Olotu, told journalists on Friday in Akure that the adoption of feed lot system was introduced to provide short term and long term solutions to the clashes among the two groups.
He said the system was in continuation of Governor Akeredolu’s efforts to stem Fulani herdsmen/ farmers clash in the state.
It will be recalled that Akeredolu recently held a peace meeting with representatives of herders and traditional rulers from the Northern Senatorial District of the state where he urged them to resolve their differences through dialogue, rather than taking up arms against each other.
The governor’s aide added that all the interest groups met at Isuada in Owo Local Government Area of the state where they agreed to accept the new system as a way of rearing cattle.
According to him, farmers and representatives of the herders, led by Umaru Babangida, agreed to abide by the conditions settling up the feed lot.
Among the conditions, according to Olotu, are banning of night grazing and under-age herders and reporting of strange herders to the appropriate authorities.
Olotu said that in Owo Local Government Area alone, no fewer than 19 herdermen camps had been identified and registered to ensure seamless interaction with herders and farmers in the council.
He said: “The state government will replicate the feed lot system in other communities. We just started in Owo as a pilot scheme.
“What this actually means is that a place is set aside in Owo Local Government Area for every herder in the area to graze their cattle.
“With this system, nobody, including the Yoruba who are equally rearing cattle is allowed to move their animals from one place to another in search of grasses.
“All they need to do is to bring their cattle to the expansive feed lot where facilities, including water and medications are provided to rear their animals.
“It is a modern ranching system, which is different from the Federal Government’s proposed cattle colony.
“Many benefits are derivable from the feed lot system. First, it is capable of providing jobs for a lot of people as they will be selling grasses in bale to the herders. Grasses will become money spinner and it will provide permanent solution to herders/farmers class.”