By Abba – Eku Onyeka, Abuja
Ahead of the coming farm season, the Etsu (traditional ruler) of Maje village in Abuja the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Chief Adams Jatau has enjoined governments at all level to provide adequate security in farmlands.
Speaking to our correspondent in his palace yesterday, the village head said that provision of adequate security in farms will not only save the lives of farmers from bandits, but will also protect farms and farm produces from herders, which according to him, will result into realisation of the government’s planned food sufficiency and security.
Admitting that they hadn’t much security problems in his domain, as a result of effective security being provided in the area by the men of Vigilant Group of Nigeria (VGN), Adams Jatau was quick to appeal to the government to complement the efforts of the security outfit, saying they can’t go far.
He said, “I can say that in my area, we don’t have much security challenges, due to efforts we have been making to put in place effective VGN. But they can’t go far without the support and effort of the government. Should the government give the VGN 100% support, we shall be sleeping with our eyes closed.
“As the farm season is fast approaching, we urge the government to plan toward assisting the grassroot farmers, people of the community, by providing adequate security for them in the farm, since our occupation is farming. The government has a plan of achieving food sufficiency and security. The only way to achieve this is to provide adequate security in farms. Effective security in farms will not only protect farmers from the hands of bandits, but also protect farm crops from the destructive hands of herders.”
He reiterated that should the government be able to address the problems being caused in farms by bandits and herders, the farmers would go about their occupation without fear, even as he added that the continued destruction of farm crops, killing and scaring of farmers away from farmlands, will continue to cause hunger, untill it is addressed.
The village head said that the fact that the government has over the years taken over all their farmland didn’t make them shy away from their occupation, even as he added that they go as far as Niger state to farm, but regretted that problems of bandits and herders have since been extended to that area.
Calling on the government to as a matter of urgency and importance, provide them with a market, where they would be buying what they can’t produce and selling the ones they can produce, he said a market in his domain will be another means of revenue generation to the people of his domain, even as he informed that due to non-existence of a market in his domain, they had been doing buying and selling in front of their respective houses.