…urges Buhari to make suspension of Ruga Settlements permanent
By Johnbosco Agbakwuru
ABUJA – SENATOR Gershon Bassey has advised the Federal Government that Cattle rearing business is a private business and should be allowed to remain a private sector matter.
Senator Bassey who is representing Cross River South Senatorial District has also commended President Muhammadu Buhari for suspending the controversial Ruga settlements and asked the President to make the suspension permanent as it has been rejected by many Nigerians.
The federal lawmaker who was the deputy Chairman, Senate Committee on Petroleum Resources in the 8th senate, in an interview in Abuja, promised to deliver the dividends of democracy to his constituents.
He said, “A lot of people who are far more experienced and knowledgeable in this matter (Cattle business) than me have proferred so many solutions like ranching but I think the key thing from my take away is that this is a private sector matter.
“It is essentially a private sector matter and not a public sector matter and therefore solutions should be tailored to creating enabling environment and also taking people’s liberties into account.
“So, these are not things you can decree or you can force people to do. There are things that are done voluntarily like we do in the private sector. In private sector there is the issue of demand and supply and if people want something a need is created for that thing but if people don’t want that thing, there is no need to try to force it down their throat.
“So, I think there must be a wider conversation…. but I think at the end of the day, the good news that came from the President is that the President is listening. So that is a good step in the right direction.”
He commended President Buhari for being sensitive to the yearning of the people on what he described as”a very unpopular policy” by listening to the populace, the electorate and taken the proper steps which was to suspend the Ruga Settlements policy.
He said, “My hope is that the suspension will be permanent and the entire policy will be scrapped because it is something that does not agree with a lot of Nigerians.”
On what be his priority in the 9th senate, he said, “I was elected to come to the 9th senate assembly. I was not elected by myself, I mean I didn’t vote myself alone to be there, people voted for me and when they voted for me certain promises were made.
“Those promises are the promises I intend to fulfill in the 9th assembly. We talk about making sure that we deliver in the much talked about dividends of democracy. We talked about making our country a better place because if the economy in our country is better, if the security in our country is better, if the education and health care are better planned, it will be good for my constituents.
“So we are going to work towards ensuring that our country improves, our country gets better because right now there are lots of problems in the country for among which is security. We are going to make sure that we contribute our qouta towards solving these problems.”