Niger state Government has delving into the federal Governments National Livestock Transformation Programme by establishing a thirty-one thousand hectares of Grazing Reserve which will generate over five hundred million Naira annually for the state when completed.
The state government plans to invest thirteen Billion Naira into the grazing reserve located in Bobii village in Mariga Local Government Area of state in partnership with stakeholders like the Central Bank of Nigeria, and the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development
The state commissioner of agriculture Mr. Haruna Nuhu Dukku told Voice of Nigeria Correspondent Ene Okwanihe in an interview that the state government is working with different stakeholders to bring the facility to its full capacity.
“We have spent almost over five hundred million naira to be precise, over five hundred million has been sunk into this programme… When the CBN people came last time, we discussed on pasture development, abattoir, milk collection, milk processing, milk selling, we thought we could earn over five hundred million naira a year, if all infrastructure we intend to put are put in the place, we will earn that”
Mr. Dukku also sheds light on the education plan for the Children of the herdsmen settling on the Gracing reserve.
He said the state is working with an American who is an expert in ranching to establish the schools and maintain them.
“This idea started when I was commissioner for livestock and industry- fishes. Mr. Governor called me and we discussed at length how we are going to develop this thing. But this woman, this American woman (Phyllis M. Sortor), inspired us to do what we have been doing here because she has the idea of how ranches are run”
He listed some of the facilities on ground presently in the ranch as primary schools, water systems, security posts, veterinary clinic, water clinic and the human clinic.
On her part, Phyllis Sortor the Director of a Non-Governmental Organisation “Schools for Africa” who has been living in Nigeria for fourteen years said her driving force is to settle the herdsmen peacefully and give them access to the basic things in life.