FILE PHOTO: Grazing reserve

Prof. Ambrose Voh of Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University (ATBU), Bauchi, said state governors need sensitisation on the provision of lands for ranching.

Voh of the Directorate of Dairy Research Centre, ATBU Bauchi, made the call on the sideline of his presentation at a public lecture on dairy development on Wednesday in Bauchi.

He attributed the refusal of some state governors to give lands for ranching to lack of enlightenment, awareness creation and sensitisation on the benefits of the grazing reserves.

“By the way, why are they calling them grazing reserves? They are called grazing reserves because they have been reserved by legislation for grazing.

“They should be made available for the purpose for which they have been set aside for grazing.

“Those grazing land would then be developed and get the grazers to move in, and that would also decrease the clashes that we are having between arable farmers and livestock farmers,” he said.

According to him, the livestock farmers will now have a place where they can call their own in the grazing reserves and graze their animals.

“If there are such governors that are refusing to make available grazing reserves for the purposes of development for grazing;

“They are getting it wrong and these are the kind of people we need to reach out to for them to really understand what these grazing reserves were set out for,” said the don.

Voh said the governors needed to be adequately educated and sensitised on lands ranching to eschew farmer/herder clashes.

The don pointed out that land is diminishing not in size but in what is available for the herdsmen to graze, saying “that is largely responsible for the crises that we are having.

“Instead of roaming about, let them (herders) remain and settle down in one place, we will now move from an extensive system of cattle production to an intensive system”.

He explained that an intensive system means getting more with less including getting more milk from fewer cows and on a smaller piece of land.

In a remark, Prof. Mohammed Abdulazeez, the Vice-Chancellor of ATBU, said the public lecture was apt as the country is talking about food security and the best way of getting food security is through the dairy.

He described the university as a TETFUND centre of excellence, particularly on food security specialising in dairy.