While it is estimated that Yobe State will generate N1.132b revenue from livestock tax, the Kulen Allah Cattle Rearers’ Association of Nigeria (KACRAN) has set conditions for the collection of such tax.
The administration of taxes, according to the state government, will improve and raise the security situation and internally generated revenue.
The president of KACRAN, Khalil Bello, disclosed that: “The State Government should reciprocate by providing us grazing reserves with the restoration of all cattle routes.”
He noted that the herders were in full support of taxing their livestock provided that the basic needs of grazing and water points for cattle and other livestock would be sustained.
He claimed that the Federal Government had been providing loans and other farm inputs of fertiliser and pesticides to crop farmers, while herders were on their own to sustain their means of livelihoods.
“The demarcated cattle routes were taken over by farmers in the last two decades,” he lamented.
He noted that herders in the state were still paying education levy without education being provided to their children in various communities.
The livestock tax followed Governor Mai Mala Buni’s Executive Order No 3 last week, in Damaturu, the state capital.
“The imposition of taxes could mitigate conflicts between the herders and farmers, while tending their cattle and farmlands in communities,” said Buni.
The Secretary to the State Government, Mallam Baba Wali, also said the tax could reduce cattle rustling and communal clashes.
The state’s Pilot Livestock Project Manager, Dr. Idrissa Madaki, also disclosed that there were 8.66 million livestock in the state.
He added that the livestock population comprised cattle, camels, donkeys, horses, goats and sheep across the state and border areas with Niger Republic.
He added that a tax of N200 imposed on a cow or camel would generate a revenue of N1.132 billion to the state government.
He added that a N100 tax rate on 8.66 million livestock in the state would also rake in N566 million yearly revenue.
He said with the implementation of Buni’s order, a high-powered committee led by the Commissioner for Agriculture, Hajiya Mairo Amshi, had been set up.
Mairo said representatives of the Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) were also on the committee to work out the tax rates on livestock.
“This committee is to sensitise and bring every member on board on the benefits of livestock taxes,” he said, stating that its implementation could improve the state’s security situation and revenue.
“Agriculture – livestock and crop production – has contributed to the development of the state,” he said.
She warned that as land under cultivation and livestock population increase, conflicts between herders and farmers might continue to rise with losses of more lives and property.
“Once we have peace in the state, we will now reintroduce and adopt the modalities of imposing livestock taxes effectively to raise revenue,” she said.
Source: The Guardian