…declares support for a ban on open grazing by S’west govs
By Adeola Badru
A former governor of Oyo State, Chief Rashidi Ladoja, has told agitators of Yoruba self-determination to exercise caution, as the clamour might degenerate into war if not well managed.
He spoke at his Bodija, Ibadan residence while speaking with journalists, after observing the Thursday Eid prayers to commemorate the end of the Ramadan fast.
Speaking on the agitation, the former governor called for more religious tolerance and fairness, justice especially in making political appointments.
He said: “Some part of the country feels cheated in the appointment into some offices in the country, the country will collapse when we have incompetent people in power.”
“The situation when a major key position is in the hands of a particular group and region doesn’t seem to go down well with most other people. This should also be looked into.”
“We are a Federation and not a mono-language or mono-ethnic country. We deserve the policies that make us strong even with our diversities but that seem to be coming to our weakness. That is why people are looking for other option in terms of restructuring, dissolution and different things.”
“And when that is the practice, it means the best of men are not in position and when you have people that are not competent running a system, the system will at the end of it collapse, let’s only hope that Nigeria will survive.”
He called for more understanding so as not to allow the situation to degenerate into war in the country saying: “People only know the beginning of the war and many people don’t know the end. Some of the agitators for the Yoruba Nation don’t even know what it means.”
“Nobody knows how the war in Syria started and it takes years they have to take it easy, there will be the time God will give us good leaders, and there will also be the time God will give us leaders that are not as good. If we want to go because of our challenges, we may need to sit down and talk things out on the way to go.”
“When people are agitating, who says those in the North are not planning to go too? But let’s assume that people in the South are talking too much while people in the North are acting too much.”
In another development, Chief Ladoja declared support for the decision of the Southern governors to ban open grazing across their regions.
Ladoja said open grazing is not sustainable as a practice, adding that, governments need to do more in terms of implementing the ban on open grazing which he said, had been passed in most states of the federation.
“Most of us know that open is not sustainable, we are still practising what was been practising 50 years ago, let’s find a way of going for sustainable systems.”
“The numbers of cows people are eating today has increased, all over the world, there are more cows than a human being, yet, they maintained it without grazing openly.”
“All over the world, many countries don’t have open grazing, we should also adopt and we should now see cow herding as a business that should be taken seriously”
“I support a ban on open grazing, there is the existence of open grazing law even in Oyo state but unfortunately, we have not seen it implemented because we still see cows roaming the streets.”
“But maybe now that all of the Southern governors have adopted it, maybe the implementation will start in earnest.”
“If people keep saying Fulani herdsmen and crisis about, maybe if there is no more open grazing, there will not be so much noise about Fulani herdsmen again. Look at the situation in Benue.”
“If we are able to tackle the issue of open grazing first, let’s see if the issue of insecurity, banditry and other vices will not be addressed,” he posited.