The Benue State Government yesterday rejected the move by the Federal Government to establish Ruga settlement for herders in three designated parts of the state.
In a statement by Governor Samuel Ortom’s Chief Press Secretary, Terver Akase, the state government alleged that the move was in gross violation of the state’s anti-open grazing law and that those behind it were enemies of progress.
“It has become necessary to make the position of the government and people of Benue State abundantly clear on the Ruga settlements for herdsmen being implemented by the Federal Government across the states including Benue.
“We however wish to reiterate that Benue State has no land for grazing reserves, grazing routes, cattle colonies or ruga settlements. The State only has land for the establishment of ranches,” the statement read in part.
It said few weeks ago, the Director of Federal Ministry of Agriculture with his team in Benue State informed officials of the State Ministry of Agriculture that he had received directives from the ministry’s headquarters in Abuja to establish Ruga which means ‘Fulani settlement’ in parts of the state.
The director, according to the statement, noted that the local government areas selected for the Ruga settlements were Otukpo, Tarka and Ukum respectively.
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