By Ayiki James, Jos
Former Governor of Plateau State, Jonah Jang has joined the ranks of those calling for the rejection of the grazing policy of being proposed by the Plateau State Governor.
The Governor who is now a Senator in a press statement signed by his media aide, Clinton Garuba, the Governor blasted the State Government over its plan to gazette large swathes of Plateau
lands into the grazing reserves policy. According to Jang the grazing reserves bill is “anti-people”, “self-serving” and
“dangerous” to Plateau values, culture and heritage. Read The Full Statement of the Senator Below: THE GRAZING RESERVES POLICY IS ANTI-PEOPLE AND
SHOULD BE REJECTED.
The attention of Senator Jonah David Jang has been drawn to a news item variously carried in the print and aired on
electronic news media to the effect that the Plateau State Government has not only endorsed the issue of the grazing
reserve but has gone ahead to initiate plans to designate some areas for that purpose.
At a time like one in which we currently live, it is imperative to state in unequivocal and unambiguous terms where one stands with regard to the issue of the grazing reserve. Sen.
Jonah Jang wishes to come clear to his constituents and all peace loving Plateau people that he does not and will not support any grazing reserve either on the floor of the senate or any forum/platform where the issue is discussed.
The issue has generated a lot of controversy amongst plateau people because government has decided to play politics with issues that affect the very fabric which defines the heritage of
our people, their culture and their land. Plateau people (regardless of creed, party affiliation or ethnicity) must rise
against any subtle attempt to cede their land for the purpose of satisfying the selfish and egotistical whims of a few who are hell bent on disturbing our collective peace.
One wonders how a government which has not shown any interest in developing agriculture in the state in the last one
year has suddenly woken to support a policy which is neither in the interest of plateau people nor that of public good for that matter. Except for the outrageous contract for the supply
of fertilizer which farmers are yet the receive, the present government in Plateau state has not shown any seriousness towards improving on the solid foundation and successes
achieved by the ASTC let alone doing anything in the sector that should warrant such outlandish support for a policy that negatively affects the very people it claims to serve. Sen. Jang had set a good example of how those who want to rear cattle or any livestock should go about doing so by establishing a ranch for the Butura Milk farm in Bokkos. Let it be on record therefore that the distinguished senator strongly rejects any attempt by the Plateau state government to introduce any form of grazing reserves in Plateau State.
The senator calls on all Plateau indigenes who have any herds of cattle to create ranches for them within their localities and any other person who also rears cattle should do same within
their locality so that nobody keeps their herd on anybody’s land. The surest way to resolving the issue of grazing reserve
is to have everyone who has herds of cattle to ranch them within their locality or any acquired land of choice; this is the best practice worldwide.
For the Federal Government which owns no cattle, to connive with willing state governors to impose a grazing reserve policy on hapless citizens who have suffered the brunt of rampaging
herdsmen in the no distant past is not only an abuse of their rights but an assault on their already battered psyche. This must vehemently be resisted.
Worse of all, to show disdain for their people, some state governments, that of Plateau inclusive, have gone ahead to
start implementation of the policy without any form of consultation with the people. This is clear indication that the govern