By Emeka Okafor
Following the quit notice issued to Fulani herdsmen to vacate the Ondo Forest Reserve in Ondo State, Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) and governors of the South-West have reached a truce.
The agreement was reached at a meeting held at the International Centre for Culture and Events (DOME), Alagbaka, which was attended by some governors from the North and various security agencies in the country.
At the meeting chaired by the chairman of the Nigerian Governors Forum and governor of Ekiti, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, MACBAN, which is the umbrella body for fulani herdsmen, agreed for herders to stop night grazing, underage grazing and illegal occupation of government reserves.
In attendance at the peace meeting were the governors of Jigawa, Kebbi, Ekiti, Osun, Oyo and Ondo.
The following were the 21 RESOLUTIONS reached at the meeting:
- That security and welfare of the people of Nigeria is the primary purpose of Government as enshrined in the 1999 constitution of Nigeria as amended.
- “The stakeholders are committed to the unity and indivisibility of Nigeria.
- “Insecurity is a national challenge and not peculiar to any tribe or region but must be addressed by the cooperation of all.
- “The order of the Ondo State Governor was misconstrued and misrepresented by a section of the media. He only ordered those occupying the Forest Reserves in Ondo State illegally to quit.
- “Criminals should be apprehended and punished, no matter their origin, class or status.
- “Security agencies have been trying to stem the tide of criminality in the country but must step up their efforts in the fight.
- “There is the need to build partnership for peace and security with MACBAN and jointly wage war against criminality.
- “No one had sent anyone away from any state or region but all hands must be on deck to fight criminality.
- The meeting further agreed that MACBAN is a peace-loving, law-abiding organization which does not habour or condone criminals and agreed that:
- Night grazing should be banned henceforth
- Underage herding is Inimical to security and hence be banned
- Occupation of State Forest Reserves illegally is condemned.
- “MACBAN also suffers insecurity and kidnapping and thus desire peaceful coexistence.
- “MACBAN is ready for any peaceful move by the states to engender security.
- “Fake news is another issue that makes our security worse than solving it.
- “There must be an enduring framework with MACBAN in a way that will help address security issues.
- “That free range grazing must be stopped to avoid conflicts between the farmers and the herders
- “Strengthening an alternative security arrangement and make them complementary to the mainstream security agencies in Nigeria.
- “MACBAN should embrace and be committed to modern breeding process by creating grazing reserves and practice ranching to prevent cattle roaming about.
- “Standing Committee comprising of farmers, MACBAN and the Government should be set up in each state (where they don’t exist) to ensure synergy and result.
- “We must create economic opportunities for our people and reduce opportunities for criminalities in our country