The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) Benue State chapter, has profusely kicked against the setting up of Ruga settlement for Fulani herdsmen in the state.
CAN Chairman, Reverend Akpen Leva while addressing a press conference on Monday in the state capital, Makurdi, said Ruga settlement is irrelevant and as such cannot be forced on people of the state.
He said; “The Ruga settlement which the federal government is forcing on the Benue community is of no relevance entirely, to the people of the state. As farmers, we have come to the naked reality that the land in Benue State cannot even satisfy the farming community in the state for the production of crops and this cannot be shared with cattle rearers for the purpose of Ruga settlement.
Reverend Leva also added that Ruga settlement for herdsmen’ would contravene the Benue’s anti-open grazing laws.
“This is why as a church in Benue State, we reject Ruga settlement for herdsmen proposed in the state. Benue, we emphasise, has no land for Ruga settlement.” He alleged that the federal government had not shown concern about the fact that the survivors of the herdsmen killings were still in IDP camps,” he added.
CAN rejection of Ruga settlement comes after Plateau State Governor Simon Lalong and his Bauchi State counterpart Bala Mohammed yesterday said they are fully in support of the Ruga settlement project aimed at addressing the lingering conflict between herders and farmers in the country.
The governors spoke to reporters after they met President Muhammadu Buhari separately at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.