The Agro-Processing, Productivity Enhancement and Livelihood Improvement Support (APPEALS), Kogi State Project Coordinator, Dr Sanni Abdullahi Ozomata, has said integrating herdsmen into the local farming activities of where they reside will go a long way in resolving farmers/herders clashes in the country.
Dr Ozomata stated this during an interactive session held with farmers at the ongoing mapping exercise embarked upon by the state coordination office of APPEALS project across the 21 local government areas of the state.
He said as a way of resolving the farmers /herders clashes in the state, the state coordination office is encouraging farmers in the state to form farming clusters which are inclusive of the local herders who are interested in farming. This he said will bring about a sense of belonging and ownership.
The state project coordinator stated that the objective is not to give up traditional lands away but as a way of engendering peaceful co-existence between local herdsmen and the host communities for the progress of the country.
Cluster head, Nagazi Farm centre in Adavi Local government area of Kogi State, Mr. Sadiku Otaru, said they have decided to integrate the herders into their cluster as farmers and this makes them act as security cover to wad off intruding herders, who are not members of the local community, from destroying their farmlands. He also stated that the mapping exercise embarked upon by the APPEALS project in the state is a right step in the right direction.
The Sarkin Fulani Osara in Adavi Local government, Muhammadu Sanni, expressed delight for their inclusion into the farming activities of the area and as a result of this, they seek to protect the farmlands against attacks from herders who are outside the community.
The state coordinator further assured the farmers, of APPEALS project, continued support in improving their livelihood.