The Northeast Development Commission, (NEDC) has been blasted for its failure to include pastoralists among beneficiaries of its policies and programs.
National President of Kullen Allah Cattle Rearers Association of Nigeria, (KACRAN) Khalil Mohammed Bello berated the commission in a statement issued on Saturday in Damaturu.
He explained that when NEDC was established, Northeast pastoralists anticipated to be among beneficiaries of the commission’s policies and programs, but later soberly regretted being among enthusiasts as the commission is not considering herdsmen in its activities despite colossal loss of about 75% of wealth to insurgency.
“KACRAN said so for the reason that everyone knows the insurgency is mainly taking place in the bushes and mostly, remote areas of the region’s affected are the areas where pastoralists permanently live with their livestock.
“It is an open secret that, only God knows how many pastoralists were buried in the North East soil due to the criminal act associated with the crises and heavy devastation that led to the formation of the commission,” he said.
The National President observed with dismay that in all submissions available in the desk of the commission for possible consideration, there is nothing good related to the hundreds of livestock lost as a result of Boko Haram activities.
“This shall only get one thinking as if the pastoralists are not Nigerians or legal indigenes of the North Eastern Nigeria.
“To us at KACRAN, NEDC has not done well since its establishment by the Federal Government of Nigeria to date, because there is nothing to be seen on ground that will be of benefit to herders who are the most vulnerable or endangered species in the zone under reference”.
Bello urged that the commission must be inclusive in its modus operandi.
“We strongly want to advise the commission to incorporate pastoralists in their policies formulation and implementation so that they will be part of the beneficiaries of the commission’s programs”, he advised.