The Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje, on Sunday called on all Fulani herdsmen in some parts of the country, especially in Benue and Taraba states, to relocate to Kano State.
Ganduje said Kano State had “vast grazing land” to accommodate herdsmen and their cattle.
The governor stated this during the monitoring of the state’s “free vaccination of over one million cattle and other small animals” at Kadawa Artificial Insemination Centre in the Garum Malam Local Government Area of the state.
The exercise titled, ‘Towards Conservation of Livestock Resource and Animal Protein for Citizens of Kano,’ was part of activities marking the 2017/2018 livestock vaccination programme.
Ganduje, who condemned the “recent killings during the clashes between farmers and herdsmen,” said they were unacceptable.
The governor said the vaccination was initiated to keep animals healthy and improve the economy of the state.
He said as part of the government’s commitment to encouraging herdsmen in the state, Kano State Government had been providing facilities that would accommodate the herdsmen and their cattle to discourage them from moving to other states in search of grazing land.
Ganduje said, “Fulani herdsmen of Kano origin do not move out of Kano to other states because we have enough grazing land, ranches and traditional stock route. They don’t have any reason to move out of the state. We take care of them and we accord them the respect and dignity they deserve.
“I am inviting herdsmen from all parts of Nigeria to relocate to Kano because we have enough facilities to accommodate them. We have grazing land in Rogo, Gaya, Kura, Tudun Wada, Ungogo and other places, where facilities have been provided to accommodate the herdsmen and their cattle.”
The governor added that his administration was already in collaboration with the Federal Government and foreign agencies to convert the Falgore Game Reserve into a modern grazing land.
“Falgore Game Reserve can take care of millions of herdsmen and their cattle in Nigeria. The location has been designed to accommodate schools, human and animal clinics, markets, recreational centres and other social amenities that would provide the herdsmen enough comfort to take care of their animals and transact their business without any hindrance.
“These killings must stop. We cannot afford to continue to witness these senseless killings in the name of Fulani herdsmen and farmers clash over lack of grazing land when we have a place like the Falgore Game Reserve, which is being underutilised.”
Ganduje also said his administration had embarked on the registration of herdsmen and their cattle to enable the government to take care of them through free vaccination and other incentives.
‘Tiv people flee 25 villages’
The indigenous Tiv people of Kadarko in the Keana Local Government Area of Nasarawa State have reportedly fled 25 villages over attacks by herdsmen.
Community leaders, under the auspices of the Concerned Indigenous Tiv People of Kadarko, said this at a press briefing in Abuja on Sunday.
Spokesman for the group, Dr Benjamin Agbede, said they decided to cry out because there appeared to be an orchestrated plot to force them out of their ancestral land.
He explained that they were worried that since the outbreak of hostilities on January 15, 2018, Tiv farmers had been left to their fate.
Agbede said, “It is on record that the governor (Tanko Al-Makura) visited the areas and saw the dead bodies on January 30, 2018, but he merely directed that the corpses should be buried by the families of the deceased without any assistance.
“We were shocked that a paltry sum of N500,000 was made available to be shared by the families of those killed and those in different hospitals.
“For the avoidance of doubt, 12 people were killed and more than 30 are receiving treatment in different hospitals.
“We are deeply worried that although the area is inhabited by other ethnic nationalities, only the Tiv people are targets of the terrorists.”
Another community leader, Felix Akie, said, “We wonder why the police did not respond on time to save our people after we made distress calls when the shootings and killings were going on in Agwan Tiv.”
They appealed to the federal and state governments to come to their aid by ensuring that peace returned so that they could return home and resume their normal lives.
The community leaders named some of the 25 affected villages to include Azer, Tamen Bature, Dooga, Che Utsaha, Nyam Adaga, Cha, Igbacha, Shatse, Ngur and Nguchi.
Gunmen kill cop, resident in Benue
Two separate attacks on communities in the troubled Logo and Guma local government areas of Benue State have left two persons dead, including a policeman, while many others are missing
The first incident, according to sources, occurred at Anyiin community in the Logo LGA when suspected herdsmen on Saturday attacked and killed a trader, identified as Abuchi, believed to be of Igbo origin.
It was gathered that the gunmen, suspected to be Fulani militia, opened fire on Igbo traders who were coming back from a local market around 6pm, killing Abuchi and injuring others.
A resident of Anyiin, Terkaa Tim, said Abuchi was a popular Igbo trader in the area.
According to him, the attack which led to his death took place along Gbeji-Anyiin Road.
He said the victim’s remains were recovered by the police near Ayoo Udu village.
Our correspondent further learnt that following the attack, the Igbo people in Benue threatened a showdown.
Although efforts to reach the President of the Igbo Community in Benue State were unsuccessful as of press time, a friend of the victim, Chima Wanchukwu, lamented the action of the herdsmen.
But the state Commissioner of Police, Fatai Owoseni, said he was not aware of the incident in Logo.
He said the only report on his table was from Tarka, where a man and his family, who were travelling to Calabar, were attacked by bandits while they were changing their vehicle’s flat tyre.
“The family’s car had a flat tyre around the Police Training School in Tarka; and while he was changing the tyre, he was attacked by bandits, but they managed to escape unhurt into the college.
“I am not aware of the killing of an Igbo man in Logo, but we have decided to provide escorts for the man and his family to their destination,” Owoseni said.
In a related development, the team deployed by the state police command in Yogbo community in the Guma LGA came under attack on Sunday.
The state Police Relations Officer, ASP Moses Yamu, who confirmed the attack, said the police team responded and engaged the gunmen in a shootout, which led to the killing of three of the gunmen.
He added that their corpses were taken away by their fleeing members, who “also suffered severe gunshot injuries.”
Yamu stated that the command lost one officer, while another one had yet to be seen.
The PPRO said, “The police are intensifying efforts with the aim of curbing armed attacks and apprehending criminal elements using tribal sentiment to cause mayhem.
“The command will also ensure adequate security to encourage residents to return to areas hitherto deserted.”
Declare herdsmen terrorists – Seadogs
The Nigerian Association of Seadogs, also known as Pyrates, has called on the Federal Government to declare and treat herdsmen in the country as terrorists.
The group explained that declaring cattle herders in Nigeria terrorists had become imperative following their activities that had led to the death of scores of Nigerians.
NAS President, Arthur Boje, who made the call during a medical outreach organised by the association at Oro-Ochiri community in Rebisi town, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, said herdsmen were also responsible for the sacking of some communities in the country.
The medical outreach was part of the association’s programme to mark its Quarter 2 Pyrates Working Committee meeting.
Boje said, “We are not happy with the killings going on in parts of the country. There is no way you will be satisfied when your brothers and sisters are killed senselessly and the government is not doing enough to save the situation.
“What those herdsmen are doing is orchestrated. It is tactically planned. These are people that have infiltrated into the country, aided by some people on the ground and also sponsored by people here.
“They are terrorists and the Federal Government should treat them as such. They are not herdsmen; they are professional killers brought from outside into the country to cause havoc.”