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As the President of Federal Republic of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari begins yet another term of fours having taking fresh oaths of office and allegiance yesterday, May 29, 2019, analysts have started looking at his sectoral performances relating to the economy.
One of the key sector that would have taken the economy out of dungeon if the revival process was not distorted by violence and killings amongst field players was agriculture in the last four years.
Like a joke, trouble started when many farmers relied on the assurances of the administration and even body language of deepening supports and interventions in export schemes to go back to farm.
However, their exodus and massive investments to farming could not stand the analogue cattle rearing model which had become obsolete in many parts of the world as the herders changed the rhythm with violence and killings associated with dragging for grazing lands which may have been invested in by their original owners.
As the killings and occupation of farmers’ lands by herders heightened, majority of new farmers and old investors started withdrawing interest out of fear of being killed as there was no clear remedy or even resolution drive from the Muhammdu Buhari led federal government.
At the height of the crisis, the then Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh, mulled importation of grasses from Brazil which experts saw as the highest lack of business intelligence on the part of the minister who had been a minister more than 35 years ago.
Experts in modern animal husbandry effectively sold the dummy of Cattle Ranching to the federal Government, but the idea seemed not bought by the presidency as it was more interested in encouraging landowners to accommodate herders who are bent on destroying their massive farming investments.
The scenario therefore hanged millions of new investments in farming by new entrants who did so based on earlier green lights shown by the same presidency.
As the second term begins, there seems to be no end in sight regarding farmers/herders fighting and associated effects to the targeted growth in agriculture.
To many observers, unless cattle business in Nigeria is officially upgraded from the ancient model of rearing and nomadism to ranching, the momentary violence will continue to defeat any other governmental drive to deepening agro investments which globally remain the highest employer of labour.
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