The notable apex Socio-cultural groups in Nigeria, the Ohanaeze Ndigbo and Afenifere have faulted the Federal Government’s plan to establish Ruga settlements for fulani herdsmen in states across the country.
Statement credited to the Federal Government, on Tuesday said in the next five years, the establishment of the Ruga herdsmen’s settlements would end open grazing by Fulani herdsmen.
It revealed that no fewer than 12 states had agreed for the settlements in their areas.
Afenifere kicks said No land for Ruga settlements in South West
But the Yoruba socio-cultural group, Afenifere, said the South-West would not surrender an inch of its land for Ruga settlement for herdsmen.
Afenifere’s spokesman, Yinka Odumakin, said the Yoruba was not in support of the Ruga settlement meant for Fulani herdsmen, describing it as a ploy to colonise the country by the nomadic tribe.
He stated that the moves had confirmed former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s statement that there was a plan to ‘Fulanise the country.’
Asked if the Ruga settlement would end pastoralist and farmers’ clashes as claimed by the Federal Government, Afenifere stated, “They can tell that to the marines; The Federal Government simply wants to carve out land from every community to give to the Fulani.
In his words: “When former President Obasanjo said there was a plan to ‘Fulanise’ Nigeria, they said it was not so, but what are you doing? For us in the South-West, no inch of Yorubaland would be given for Ruga because it is a plan to colonise the country. It is like what the British did.”
Odumakin pointed out that the plan was capable of precipitating crisis and jeopardizing the unity of the country, stating that the agenda was “sectional and clannish.”