Although President Muhammadu Buhari has given his word to put an end to the clash between the Fulani herdsmen and farmers in the middle belt and Northern part of Nigeria which has lingered for years now, the clash is yet to cease. The Governor of Ekiti state, Ayodele Fayose, is perturbed by this challenge and is blaming the alleged killing of harmless Nigerians by Fulani herdsmen on Mr. President’s silence over the dispute.
“The murder of over 300 Agatu people of Benue State and the silence of the Federal Government on this genocide is a clear invitation to chaos.”
The governor described activities of the Fulani herdsmen as “inimical to the revival of agriculture in the country.”
“Farmlands costing billions of naira have been destroyed in States in the South-West, South-East and North-Central zones of the country. One wonders how Nigerians can go back to farming when those already in the farms are losing billions of naira worth of crops to destruction of their farmlands by the Fulani Herdsmen and the Federal Government is not doing anything about it.”
On Sunday, the Special Assistant to the Governor on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka, in a press release expressed his sympathy with the victims and their families, adding that the Federal Government must stop acting blind to the fight created by these herdsmen.
“If in the last one week, over 300 Nigerians were allegedly killed, several villages razed, with farmlands destroyed by Fulani herdsmen and President Buhari is comfortable junketing from one country to the other, something is definitely wrong somewhere.
“This is because in saner climes, no country will have over 300 of its citizens reportedly killed with thousands others displaced and the leader of such country will not rush home from wherever he is to take charge of the situation by himself,” the governor said.
He recalled to remind President Buhari how he led a delegation of Arewa leaders to Ibadan on October 13, 2000, to confront the then Governor of Oyo State, Late Alhaji Lam Adesina over alleged killing of Fulani herdsmen in Saki, Oke Ogun Area of the state.
“If 16 years ago, President Buhari could be so concerned about the killing of Fulani Herdsmen in Oyo State such that he, as a private citizen led Arewa leaders to Ibadan to show their anger, why is the President silent now that Fulani Herdsmen are the ones allegedly killing people, raping women and destroying farmlands in Benue State in particular and other States in the country?
“Is the President unmindful of the possibility of Nigerians seeing his silence as conspiracy? Most importantly, what has Boko Haram caused Nigeria that the Fulani herdsmen are not also causing now?” the statement read.
He also challenged the head of cattle breeders, the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) in particular and Northern leaders in general to be part of the persistent involvement of herdsmen in attack on communities, killing and raping of Nigerians.
“Nigeria is still battling Boko Haram and the country cannot afford another regime of anarchy, which this persistent killing of Nigerians by the Fulani Herdsmen can cause,” he said.