The Igbo Farmers Progressive Union (IPFU), on Sunday 19th August met at Hill Top Ngwo, Enugu, Enugu state to review its activities. After extensive deliberations. We resolved as follows;
1. It is no longer news that our farmlands have been under siege by terrorists masquerading as cattle herders. It is equally worrisome that our lives, ancestral lands, and communities are under threat of being overrun if we fold our hands and do nothing.
2. As the face of the New Farmer and modern farming methods in Igboland, we are committed to improvements in agricultural production and thereby ensuring better yield in produce and protection of our numerous subsistence farmers, the silent and dominant workforce of Igboland. IFPU is not out to lament, we are not out to plead, we know where it pinches and we are determined to ensure that our land is protected.
3. We are encouraged by the words of the South East Governors Forum that they would not allow RUGA, NLTP or any other acronym the FGN chooses to adopt to sell their duplicitous agenda. We are equally heartened to hear the SE governors forum pledge to encourage Igbo farmers and entrepreneurs who want to go into ranching of our delicious efi igbo
4. We are deeply concerned that the nefarious activities of the Cattle Herdsmen has wrought havoc on our farmlands. This, juxtaposed with wanton terror and intimidation has made the ordinary farmer very cautious in tilling his land for farming purposes, to the point of abandonment.
5. We are totally dismayed by the fact that the security agencies seem not to have recorded much success in arresting this ugly development, which has now snowballed to include murder, kidnapping and rape.
6. We are gladdened by the pro-active measures adopted by the SE Governors Forum at their meeting of 28th July 2019, to curb this menace. We would wish to suggest that the Forest Ranger initiative be backed up by legislation proscribing open grazing on our farmlands, thereby giving legal muscle to the operations of the Forest Rangers.
7. IFPU acting as a pressure group, will hold the feet of our political leaders and stakeholders to the fire, and ensure this lofty goal is achieved. We would also interface with other igbo leaders and pressure groups to ensure the voice and the will of the farmers never gets suppressed in this struggle.
Comrades our faith is in our own hands. We cannot fold our hands. Let’s engage, let’s encourage, let’s make our voices heard and ensure that the right steps and actions are taken to protect our people. Join IFPU today, let’s secure igboland for our children and the generations unborn.
Chief Maxi Okwu
Protem National Chairman
Comrade Uchenna Nnadi
Protem National Secretary
19th August 2019.