Northern region alone can accommodate Ruga settlements — Niger govt

The Niger State Government says northern states have the potential to accommodate Ruga settlements conceived to address the incessant clashes between farmers and herders.

The Secretary to the State Government, Ahmed Ibrahim Matane, told journalists in Minna on Monday that the north has the largest land mass in the country with greater portion largely untapped.

He urged northern state governors, in collaboration with the federal government, to put the land into judicious use through the Ruga settlement initiative.

He said the initiative could look at the possibility of reactivating the structures  put in place by the defunct Northern Region Government through the many grazing reserves that abound in the region.

According to him, most of the reserves have been gazetted with already developed structures but were abandoned.

He described the discontent over the proposed settlement as needless, saying bringing the nomads together would end the conflict caused by the struggle for space, adding that the initiative would lead to development and enhancement of livestock value chain.

“Livestock development is a big business. The value chain is enormous and will attract huge foreign exchange for the country. Leather alone is a multimillion naira business and in the ongoing diversification drive of the federal government from oil to agriculture; livestock subsector could be the key flagship,” he said.

He said Niger had taken the lead by rehabilitating the 45, 000 hectares Bobi Grazing Reserve in Mariga local government area, saying the state government would expedite action towards promoting pasture development for pastoralists at the grazing reserve.


  1. God bless you sir. It is hoped that the progenitor of RUGA will heed your advice and proposal. Patriotic Nigerians use this platform to challenge the government to key into this wise proposal. While all well meaning political leaders of thought, business men and women, industrialist are encouraged to support the Niger state government in actualising this venture. Should the government of the day and or the Fulani “cowboys” failed to support this way forward, then assurely there are poisonous hidden agenda.

  2. Prof Chris Anyanwu

    Every good idea can transparently overwhelm negativities. Let the good idea clean its own house and argue its own case It will eventually find favour. Otherwise bad ideas no matter howwhitwashed, will end in dustbin of history.

  3. Whether RUGA settlement for Fulani’s is a good idea or not is not the contention here; people should avoid being dragged into that trap of argument with these marabouts. The main issue is that cattle rearing is exclusively a private business, just like cocoa farming or palm tree farming or even spare parts business, and should be treated as that. The Federal Government should not drag itself and every other person into discussing it as the main issue of governance, let alone forcing states to donate land toward actualizing it. It is unconscionable for any Nigerian leader, especially at the federal level, to misappropriate the country’s resources for the benefit of his own people/ethnic stock alone; that is exactly what Buhari is doing, not minding the clear and present danger ahead. This will not stand because it portends disaster for everyone. The role of government is contained in the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, and the last time I checked, Building Ruga Settlements for marauding, bloodsucking Fulani Herders is not part of the roles and functions of a responsible government. The key roles, which include infrastructure, economy and job creation as well as security and education for the people have not been touched in the last five years of this devilish government; but they are only interested in RUGA settlement. God’s punishment awaits them and their southern collaborators.

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