The Yoruba Council of Elders (YCE) has kicked against establishment of the proposed Ruga settlements in any of the Southwest states.
It said none of the Yorubaland will be available for such project.
YCE described the move by the Federal Government as “dead on arrival,” according to a statement by its President, Dansaaki Ade Agbede in Ibadan on Monday.
Agbede wondered how a group of people seen as threats to peace and security of others would own settlements in places outside their domains.
According to him: “To now think that the Federal Government that should be concerned and worried about the untoward activities of such people is the sponsor of Ruga is worrisome.
“Such a project is not at all in the best interest of this country as well as PMB’s presidency and the earlier the Federal Government listens to the voice of the people by disembarking on the project, the better.
“Virtually all the states outside of the domains of the Fulani herdsmen are against the project and Yoruba speaking states are no exception.”
Insisting on rejection of the project in the entire Yorubaland, the YCE also known as ‘Egbe Igbimo Agba Yoruba’ maintained that the recent experience of the people in the hands of herdsmen “leaves much to be desired with our spirit of openness and accommodation being eroded. We can’t fold our arms and allow our land to be overrun by strangers.”
He charged Governors of the six states of Lagos, Oyo, Ogun, Ondo, Ekiti and Osun to be on guard and let the Federal Government know the stance of their people on the matter.
He said: “This is not about politics or political party affiliation. It is about patriotism and responsibility to the people that elected them into office.
“As the highest body of Yoruba socio-cultural group, we are saying an emphatic NO to the construction of Fulani settlements in any of the states in the Yoruba speaking area of the country.
“Our land is for the establishment of industries and farming and not cattle grazing and we are expressing our vehement opposition to the project, which to us is nothing but an expansionist agenda.”