Gushegu (N/R), Dec 6, GNA – A community level debate on livestock trading module has been held for stakeholders in the sector in the Gushegu District of the Northern to discuss challenges facing livestock production and trading in West Africa.
The event was also to analyse the challenges that face livestock trading in the future as well as how the livestock value chain worked through point of sale of cattle by farmers and how it followed different steps before reaching the final market.
Participants included; chiefs, Police personnel, cattle herdsmen including; some Fulanis, officers from the Ministry of Agriculture, veterinary officers amongst other officials from the Gushegu District Assembly.
The week-long event, which opened at Gushegu on Monday, formed part of the agro-pastoralism project dubbed: “Strengthening the Resilience of Agro-pastoral Systems in West Africa (PARSAO)” being implemented by the Ghana Developing Communities Association and Community Life Improvement Programme (CLIP).
The project works to improve conditions for cattle breeding and movement across borders and regions in West Africa thereby increasing the local meat trade and access to markets.
It is funded by United Kingdom Agency for International Development (UKAID), Acting for Life, Air France and Danish International Development Assistance (Danida).
Mr Lukman Yussif, Project Manager in-charge of CLIP/PARSAO project, who spoke during the opening ceremony of the informed debate, said the initiative was a strategy to help cattle herders and communities to understand one another to help to reduce conflicts and tensions between them.
Over the years, Fulani herdsmen have been accused of destruction of food crops, rape, robbery amongst others, a situation, which fueled conflicts between them and members of local communities including farmers.
Mr Yussif said as had been done in some West African countries, there was the need for the country to create corridors purposely for cattle herders to pass to reduce interaction between them and communities to avoid conflicts.
He said CLIP would work to facilitate community level dialogues between cattle herders and other stakeholders to avoid conflicts between them.
Mr Yakubu Sumani, who represented the Regent of Gushegu, welcomed the idea of creating a corridor for cattle to pass saying it would help to minimise the destruction of food crops urging government to adopt the proposal.
Mr Abukari Guma, a Fulani cattle herder from Bulugu in the district, called for a continued dialogue between cattle herders and local people to address the issue of conflicts between them.
Mr Mohammed Tijani, Gushegu District Crop Officer described the initiative as laudable saying it would help create harmony between cattle herders and members of local communities including farmers in the district.