The Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development in collaboration with the Ministry of Internal Affairs today inaugurated the Committee for the Creation and Training of a Special Unit of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps – NSCDC Officers to provide security for host communities of the proposed FG cattle ranches; and protect the agricultural investments of the scheme.
Speaking at the inauguration ceremony in Abuja, the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development – Chief Audu Ogbeh thanked the Minister of Internal Affairs for his prompt response to addressing this national challenge in the area of agriculture stating that we now want to create cattle ranches, bringing our cattle together in manageable conditions where we can finally solve the conflicts between herdsmen and crop farmers within the shortest period in Nigeria.
“We are hoping that in the process, the Civil Defence Corps will create a special unit of officers, adequately trained and equipped to protect the communities, agricultural investments against rustlers and prevent cows from leaving the ranches. Beyond oil, we need agriculture as an investment. Grasses, water and vet services will be provided in the ranches and no herdsman will have any excuse to roam. If they do that, then they are breaking the law. We will harvest high quality milk and beef for local consumption and hides and skin for export. I urge the Committee to discuss this issue seriously and work out the modalities. We need to tell the world that if we invest or invite foreign investors to Nigeria, their investment is secured. The President is committed to the success of this and the need to end this violence.”
In his remarks, Minister of Internal Affairs – Lt. Gen. Abdulrahman Dambazzau said: “I responded very quickly to this request because it bothers on the responsibility of our ministry to secure lives and properties of Nigerians and protect our agricultural investments. This duty is directly connected to the ease of doing business and we want to encourage investors to come to Nigeria. We are solidly behind the ranching programme and will provide adequate support to the ministry of agriculture to succeed.”
The Committee, headed by Chairman – Mr. Noah Auta, Director, Joint Services, Ministry of Internal Affairs is expected to deliberate on the operational modalities of the special unit and submit its recommendation within the shortest possible time.