Godwin Obaseki, governor of Edo, has asked the federal government to provide funds for those in private business to set up ranches in the state.
He made the demand during his meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday at the presidential villa, Abuja.
Speaking to state house correspondents after the meeting, the governor said: “As you know, most southern states have passed laws relating to open grazing, but Edo has not, because we want to ensure that whatever laws we pass are laws that we can enforce.
“My people say that, as far as they’re concerned, ranching is a private business and therefore, just like every other agricultural venture, those involved should provide the land.
“As you already know, it is expensive, it is not cheap to run and manage ranches.
“So, what I came to discuss with the president was that since the people of Edo would rather invest privately, those who are interested want to make it a private concern, then the National Livestock Transformation Programme, which is now being implemented by the federal government, should acknowledge our model, and should also be able to help people benefit from the funding that is now being made available for people who want to go into the livestock business and make investments in ranches and other similar livestock programmes.”
Asked if he would contemplate returning to the All Progressives Congress (APC), Obaseki said he could not contemplate it, given his integrity.
“Well, I think I’ve shown that I’m a politician with integrity and I have made it very clear that I didn’t leave the other party on my own. I was pushed out of the party, and someone else gave me cover, gave me an opportunity,” he said.
“It will not be the right thing to do to now leave who helped you, who gave you the umbrella in your storm, and then go back to the person who pushed you out.”