Grazing Reserve: Will Buhari Clear Sambisa Forest For Herdsmen?


Following the continued controversy trailing the proposed Grazing Reserves Bill presented to the National Assembly by the Government of President Muhammadu Buhari, a human rights group, Centre for Human Rights and Social Justice, (CHRSJ), has advised the President to clear up Sambisa Forest which serves as the operational headquarters of the Boko Haram sect, for its proposed ‘Grazing Reserve Project’ for the Fulani herdsmen.

Reacting to the controversial proposed bill, the Chairman of the group, Suleiman Adeniyi, gave this advise to the Federal Government in a statement made available to newsmen in Osogbo on Sunday stating that rather than acquiring land all over the country for grazing, Buhari should simply clear the Sambisa Forest for herdsmen to graze their cattle.

Suleiman, who doubles as the Chairman of the Civil Societies Coalition for the Emancipation of Osun State (CSCEOS), pointed out that the appearance of the herdsmen has become a major threat to the peace of Nigeria with their viciousness, adding that relocating them to Sambisa forest would be a wiser alternative instead of starting another crisis with land owners all over the country.

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Grazing Reserve

The statement reads:

“The President Muhammadu Buhari led Federal Government of Nigeria should go and clear the den of Boko Haram sect, popularly called ‘Sambiza Forest’ for its proposed ‘Grazing Reserve Project’ for the Fulani Herdsmen.

“The proposed bill would increase avoidable crisis in the land through the violent resistance across the region of the country. The Fulani herdsmen have become dangerous species across the states of the federation.

“President Buhari should drop the idea of forcing the grazing reserves bill on the states contrary to section 17,18 and 20 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended, in order to save the country from imminent violent problem.

“The proposed grazing reserves idea is ill-conceived, illegal, unconstitutional, self-serving, retrogressive, day-light robbery and time bomb which is capable of igniting monumental crisis across the length and breadth of the nation.”

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The group also pleaded with politicians and international community to persuade the President to drop the idea of the Grazing Reserve Project saying it might give rise to another crisis which would be difficult to resolve.

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