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JOINT STATEMENT OF CHIEF OLUSEGUN OBASANJO AND SHEIKH DR. AHMAD ABUBAKAR GUMI AT THE VISIT OF THE LATTER TO CHIEF OLUSEGUN OBASANJO IN ABEOKUTA SUNDAY, APRIL 4, 2021

JOINT STATEMENT OF CHIEF OLUSEGUN OBASANJO AND SHEIKH DR. AHMAD ABUBAKAR GUMI AT THE VISIT OF THE LATTER TO CHIEF OLUSEGUN OBASANJO IN ABEOKUTA SUNDAY, APRIL 4, 2021


As part of his continued efforts to find solutions for the general insecurity in the country and particularly for the menace of banditry, kidnapping and ransom payment, Sheikh Gumi with a delegation of eight, as follows Prof. Usman Yusuf, Mallam Tukur Mamu, Dr. Umar Ardo, Dr. Ibrahim Abdullahi, Honourable Suleiman Gumi, Alhaji Suleiman Yakubu and Mallam Buba Mohammed, visited Chief Olusegun Obasanjo in Abeokuta, Ogun State on April 4, 2021.


Chief Obasanjo received Sheikh Gumi and his delegation in the presence of Oba Babajide Bakre, Agura of Gbagura, Abeokuta; Bishop Tunde Akin-Akinsanya, Chairman of Ogun State Christian Association of Nigeria; Sheikh Sa'addallah Alade Bamigbola, Chief Imam of Egbaland; Chief Kenny Martins, Chief Ola Babajide Jaiyeoba; Rev. Tony Ojeshina, Chief Imams of Oke-Ona, Gbagura, Owu and Mr. Vitalis Ortese.


After exchange of pleasantries, Sheikh Gumi briefed Chief Obasanjo with other hosts on the measures and steps he had taken and spearheaded to stem the tide of insecurity and menace of banditry, kidnapping and ransom payment in many parts of the North.


Questions and discussions ensued to clarify some statements credited to Sheikh Gumi on his well-intended mission in the past. After clarification of points by Sheikh Gumi, discussion centred on causes – remote and immediate -, effects and implications, actions and reactions by communities, local authorities, state governments, national government and governments of our neghbouring countries and countries within West Africa.


After deep, frank and intimate discussions, the following points were arrived at and decided upon for appropriate actions as recommended:


1. Chief Obasanjo commended Sheikh Gumi for his initiative and encouraged him not to relent in his efforts.


2. Sheikh Gumi thanked Chief Obasanjo for his past services emphasising the special unifying efforts and attributes to the nation and for the warm welcome accorded his delegation.


3. The menace of banditry, kidnapping, other crimes and atrocities leading to general insecurity is a nationwide phenomenon.


4. We acknowledge that people from different parts of the country and outside the country are involved although some people are more predominantly involved than others.


5. We must not advertently or inadvertently, in words, action or inaction encourage or support criminality.


6. We acknowledge that the security situation has gone beyond tolerance; hence Sheik Gumi’s coming to Abeokuta to confer with Chief Olusegun Obasanjo.


7. We identified the crisis as micro ethnic conflict between the Fulani and many host communities mainly in the North West.


8. We identified the remote causes as educational and economic disparities, and the negative use of religion and ethnicity by unscrupulous politicians.


9. Solutions must be seen and provided on short-, medium-, and long-term bases and must be composed of stick and carrot for the offender and the vulnerable.


10. All well-meaning Nigerians have to be involved in finding solutions by:


a. desisting from blame game;


b. desisting from ethnicising these crimes;


c. desisting from religionising these crimes;


d. desisting from regionalising these crimes;


e. respecting one another individually, community-wise, locally, ethnically, religiously and socially;


f. showing tolerance and accommodation where necessary;


g. condemning criminal acts no matter where it is committed and by whom it is committed in Nigeria;


h. encouraging more of carrot solution as may be found necessary;


i. sharing information at all levels;


j. not accepting criminality as a way of life for any individual or group in our nation;


11. Since the end of the civil war, the military are the strongest and most potent instrument and symbol of national unity that we have and we must keep them so.


12. State governments must have adequate means of providing security for their people and as chief executives and chief security officers of their states, they must have the means at their disposal to ensure security for all within their states.


13. Federal government must be proactive, secure necessary and updated intelligence to deal with organised crimes and have common policy for the nation. It is not solving the problem when one state goes for negotiation and molly-cuddling of criminals and another one goes for shooting them. Nor should one state go for ransom payment and another one going against.


14. Education is one main key to solve the problem in the long run but it must start now. The 14 million children that should be in school and are out of school must be put in school with local authorities, state governments and federal government working together.


15. Wean those who are ready to be weaned out of the bushes and crime, settle and rehabilitate them, give them skills, empower them and let them have employment.


16. The hardened criminals must be hard hit with stick. Unlawful carrying of arms should be very seriously punished.


17. Federal government should take the issue up seriously within ECOWAS to work for a regional solution.


18. Every community must be encouraged and empowered to stand firm and strong against criminals.


19. There should be protection and reward covertly for whistle blowers against criminals living in the community.


20. Special courts should be created to deal promptly with cases of banditry, kidnapping, ransom demanding and unlawful carrying of weapons.


21. Let the slogan be: Security is the responsibility of all Nigerians.


We agree to continue to work together for solutions for the security of Nigeria and to seek others to join us as we widely circulate our joint statement.  


To this end, Sheik Gumi has extended an invitation to Chief Obasanjo to visit Kaduna with a view to continuing the discourse started today and Chief Obasanjo has graciously accepted.


We conclude that to keep Nigeria safe and secure for all Nigerians and others living in Nigeria is a task that all well-meaning Nigerians must engage in, separately and collectively. Both of us resolve that we would not relent in our efforts.  


The delegations on both sides acceded to this statement. We agree to meet again in due course to re-examine progress and situation of security in Nigeria.


 

_____________________​​​​ __________________________ 

Chief Olusegun Obasanjo​​​ Sheikh 

Ahmad Abubakar Gumi


As part of his continued efforts to find solutions for the general insecurity in the country and particularly for the menace of banditry, kidnapping and ransom payment, Sheikh Gumi with a delegation of eight, as follows Prof. Usman Yusuf, Mallam Tukur Mamu, Dr. Umar Ardo, Dr. Ibrahim Abdullahi, Honourable Suleiman Gumi, Alhaji Suleiman Yakubu and Mallam Buba Mohammed, visited Chief Olusegun Obasanjo in Abeokuta, Ogun State on April 4, 2021.


Chief Obasanjo received Sheikh Gumi and his delegation in the presence of Oba Babajide Bakre, Agura of Gbagura, Abeokuta; Bishop Tunde Akin-Akinsanya, Chairman of Ogun State Christian Association of Nigeria; Sheikh Sa'addallah Alade Bamigbola, Chief Imam of Egbaland; Chief Kenny Martins, Chief Ola Babajide Jaiyeoba; Rev. Tony Ojeshina, Chief Imams of Oke-Ona, Gbagura, Owu and Mr. Vitalis Ortese.


After exchange of pleasantries, Sheikh Gumi briefed Chief Obasanjo with other hosts on the measures and steps he had taken and spearheaded to stem the tide of insecurity and menace of banditry, kidnapping and ransom payment in many parts of the North.


Questions and discussions ensued to clarify some statements credited to Sheikh Gumi on his well-intended mission in the past. After clarification of points by Sheikh Gumi, discussion centred on causes – remote and immediate -, effects and implications, actions and reactions by communities, local authorities, state governments, national government and governments of our neghbouring countries and countries within West Africa.


After deep, frank and intimate discussions, the following points were arrived at and decided upon for appropriate actions as recommended:


1. Chief Obasanjo commended Sheikh Gumi for his initiative and encouraged him not to relent in his efforts.


2. Sheikh Gumi thanked Chief Obasanjo for his past services emphasising the special unifying efforts and attributes to the nation and for the warm welcome accorded his delegation.


3. The menace of banditry, kidnapping, other crimes and atrocities leading to general insecurity is a nationwide phenomenon.


4. We acknowledge that people from different parts of the country and outside the country are involved although some people are more predominantly involved than others.


5. We must not advertently or inadvertently, in words, action or inaction encourage or support criminality.


6. We acknowledge that the security situation has gone beyond tolerance; hence Sheik Gumi’s coming to Abeokuta to confer with Chief Olusegun Obasanjo.


7. We identified the crisis as micro ethnic conflict between the Fulani and many host communities mainly in the North West.


8. We identified the remote causes as educational and economic disparities, and the negative use of religion and ethnicity by unscrupulous politicians.


9. Solutions must be seen and provided on short-, medium-, and long-term bases and must be composed of stick and carrot for the offender and the vulnerable.


10. All well-meaning Nigerians have to be involved in finding solutions by:


a. desisting from blame game;


b. desisting from ethnicising these crimes;


c. desisting from religionising these crimes;


d. desisting from regionalising these crimes;


e. respecting one another individually, community-wise, locally, ethnically, religiously and socially;


f. showing tolerance and accommodation where necessary;


g. condemning criminal acts no matter where it is committed and by whom it is committed in Nigeria;


h. encouraging more of carrot solution as may be found necessary;


i. sharing information at all levels;


j. not accepting criminality as a way of life for any individual or group in our nation;


11. Since the end of the civil war, the military are the strongest and most potent instrument and symbol of national unity that we have and we must keep them so.


12. State governments must have adequate means of providing security for their people and as chief executives and chief security officers of their states, they must have the means at their disposal to ensure security for all within their states.


13. Federal government must be proactive, secure necessary and updated intelligence to deal with organised crimes and have common policy for the nation. It is not solving the problem when one state goes for negotiation and molly-cuddling of criminals and another one goes for shooting them. Nor should one state go for ransom payment and another one going against.


14. Education is one main key to solve the problem in the long run but it must start now. The 14 million children that should be in school and are out of school must be put in school with local authorities, state governments and federal government working together.


15. Wean those who are ready to be weaned out of the bushes and crime, settle and rehabilitate them, give them skills, empower them and let them have employment.


16. The hardened criminals must be hard hit with stick. Unlawful carrying of arms should be very seriously punished.


17. Federal government should take the issue up seriously within ECOWAS to work for a regional solution.


18. Every community must be encouraged and empowered to stand firm and strong against criminals.


19. There should be protection and reward covertly for whistle blowers against criminals living in the community.


20. Special courts should be created to deal promptly with cases of banditry, kidnapping, ransom demanding and unlawful carrying of weapons.


21. Let the slogan be: Security is the responsibility of all Nigerians.


We agree to continue to work together for solutions for the security of Nigeria and to seek others to join us as we widely circulate our joint statement.  


To this end, Sheik Gumi has extended an invitation to Chief Obasanjo to visit Kaduna with a view to continuing the discourse started today and Chief Obasanjo has graciously accepted.


We conclude that to keep Nigeria safe and secure for all Nigerians and others living in Nigeria is a task that all well-meaning Nigerians must engage in, separately and collectively. Both of us resolve that we would not relent in our efforts.  


The delegations on both sides acceded to this statement. We agree to meet again in due course to re-examine progress and situation of security in Nigeria.


 

_____________________​​​​ __________________________ 

Chief Olusegun Obasanjo​​​ Sheikh 

Ahmad Abubakar Gumi

IBARAPA Youths storm Ibadan in Protest against Herdsmen killing, Makinde's criminal silence and unjust stances

IBARAPA Youths storm Ibadan in Protest against Herdsmen killing, Makinde's criminal silence and unjust stances


Today, Ibarapa youths stormed the Oyo State Secretariat to protest the ongoing insecurity, demanding the release of arrested comrades and insisting that open grazing without respect for Yoruba farmers or their lands be forbidden.


They insisted that Oyo state Gov. Seyi Makinde MUST listen to the people. Yoruba people are being slaughtered on his watch and he is arresting the survivors! 

Other demands were clearly written on their banner.


#EnoughIsEnough
#YorubaSecurityGroup 
#YorubaNationSecurity
✊๐Ÿพ

Today, Ibarapa youths stormed the Oyo State Secretariat to protest the ongoing insecurity, demanding the release of arrested comrades and insisting that open grazing without respect for Yoruba farmers or their lands be forbidden.


They insisted that Oyo state Gov. Seyi Makinde MUST listen to the people. Yoruba people are being slaughtered on his watch and he is arresting the survivors! 

Other demands were clearly written on their banner.


#EnoughIsEnough
#YorubaSecurityGroup 
#YorubaNationSecurity
✊๐Ÿพ

TINUBU URGES GOVERNMENTS TO CONVERT UNOCCUPIED PUBLIC LAND TO RANCHES....

TINUBU URGES GOVERNMENTS TO CONVERT UNOCCUPIED PUBLIC LAND TO RANCHES....


๐Ÿ‘‰Please is there any inch of ancestral land in Nigeria that is public?


๐Ÿ‘‰ Is there any land in Nigeria that are not owned by either individuals, companies, kinsmen, communities and entities ?


๐Ÿ‘‰Why is Tinubu not urging governments to convert unoccupied lands to spare parts shops , or pig pens or poultry houses or cassava farms or rice orchards ?


๐Ÿ‘‰When did the private cow rearing business of fula tribes men , become the burden of Nigeria , to the extent that the property of indigenous and aborigines natives have become public properties to be handed over to fula cow rearers?  


๐Ÿ‘‰Any cow rearer , that cannot afford to buy land, pay for it, process the C of O and set his or her ranch by himself, should just slaughter the cows and go home. 


Cow is not the only beef that one can eat . We have pig , goats , sheep , ram , chicken, turkey , rabbits, antelopes etc . 


๐Ÿ‘‰ Sincerely, I am so put off by this man's genuflecting and double speaking antics , that I am struggling so hard to hold back from dishing out unprintable words on him. 


 How can one man allow his lust for power and vaunting ambition to rule Nigeria, blind him to such an extent that he may even be ready to cede Lagos away just to occupy Aso Rock ?.


This is the same man that asked us rhetorically.... where are the cows?  


I pray that the progressive men and women of conscience amongst the Yoruba and Igbo nations will not allow this man and his likes to mortgage the lives and safety of their people.  


There are no public land anywhere for ranches to be build with public resources. Any cow rearer, just like goat , chicken, sheep, pig rearers and spare parts sellers that cannot buy land , process ownership and build up his or her privately owned ranches and shops should go back to his fathers house in his or her village. 


The only place land is public and unoccupied is the rich 60,000 square Sambissa forest that BH is occupying. That rich lush green land is 20 times the size of Lagos land mass and 3 times the size of South East land mass . It can contain 30million cows. 


Tinubu should please URGE his fellow APC leaders in the North East and his commander in chief and friend to send the army and air force to clear the place so that the fula cow rearers can enjoy free and unfettered range for their cows. 


I come in peace


Dr Nnaemeka Onyeka OBIARAERI, FICA, MIRA


(Punch)


๐Ÿ‘‰Please is there any inch of ancestral land in Nigeria that is public?


๐Ÿ‘‰ Is there any land in Nigeria that are not owned by either individuals, companies, kinsmen, communities and entities ?


๐Ÿ‘‰Why is Tinubu not urging governments to convert unoccupied lands to spare parts shops , or pig pens or poultry houses or cassava farms or rice orchards ?


๐Ÿ‘‰When did the private cow rearing business of fula tribes men , become the burden of Nigeria , to the extent that the property of indigenous and aborigines natives have become public properties to be handed over to fula cow rearers?  


๐Ÿ‘‰Any cow rearer , that cannot afford to buy land, pay for it, process the C of O and set his or her ranch by himself, should just slaughter the cows and go home. 


Cow is not the only beef that one can eat . We have pig , goats , sheep , ram , chicken, turkey , rabbits, antelopes etc . 


๐Ÿ‘‰ Sincerely, I am so put off by this man's genuflecting and double speaking antics , that I am struggling so hard to hold back from dishing out unprintable words on him. 


 How can one man allow his lust for power and vaunting ambition to rule Nigeria, blind him to such an extent that he may even be ready to cede Lagos away just to occupy Aso Rock ?.


This is the same man that asked us rhetorically.... where are the cows?  


I pray that the progressive men and women of conscience amongst the Yoruba and Igbo nations will not allow this man and his likes to mortgage the lives and safety of their people.  


There are no public land anywhere for ranches to be build with public resources. Any cow rearer, just like goat , chicken, sheep, pig rearers and spare parts sellers that cannot buy land , process ownership and build up his or her privately owned ranches and shops should go back to his fathers house in his or her village. 


The only place land is public and unoccupied is the rich 60,000 square Sambissa forest that BH is occupying. That rich lush green land is 20 times the size of Lagos land mass and 3 times the size of South East land mass . It can contain 30million cows. 


Tinubu should please URGE his fellow APC leaders in the North East and his commander in chief and friend to send the army and air force to clear the place so that the fula cow rearers can enjoy free and unfettered range for their cows. 


I come in peace


Dr Nnaemeka Onyeka OBIARAERI, FICA, MIRA


(Punch)

Tinubu: Farmers have a right to farm their land unmolested, Herders have a right to raise their livestock without undue interference

Tinubu: Farmers have a right to farm their land unmolested, Herders have a right to raise their livestock without undue interference

The herder-farmer dispute has taken on acute and violent dimensions. It has cost too many innocent lives while destroying the property and livelihoods of many others. It has also aggravated ethnic sentiment and political tension. Despite the efforts of some of those in positions of high responsibility and public trust, the crisis has not significantly abated. Sadly, others who should know better have incited matters by tossing about hate-tainted statements that fall dangerously short of the leadership these people claim to provide. We all must get hold of our better selves to treat this matter with the sobriety it requires.

 

Because of the violence that has ensued and the fretful consequences of such violence if left unabated, we must move in unison but decisively to end the spiral of death and destruction. Only when the violence and the illogic of it are halted can logic and reason prevail. Until the violence is rolled back, we cannot resolve the deep problems that underlie this conflict. We will neither be able to uplift the farmer from his impoverished toil nor move the herder toward the historic transformation which he must make.    

 

Yet, as vital as security is to the resolution of this matter, we must realize security measures alone will not suffice. Enhanced security may be the necessary first step, but it cannot be the only step. Nor do we resolve this by hitching ourselves to emotional, one-dimensional answers. More to the point, those who cast this as exclusively a matter of ethnic confrontation are mistaken. This is no time for reckless chauvinism of any kind, on either side of this dispute. This matter is not ethnic in factual origin or actual causation although in the minds and hearts of too many it has become ethnic in recrimination and impulsive action.

 

There have been sporadic disputes in the past but this one is more severe. The reasons for the greater violence of this current dispute are myriad. Economic hardship and its resultant dislocation, proliferation of weapons, generalized increase in criminality, and weakening of social institutions all play a role. Desertification, increased severity and length of the dry season, diminution of water resources, impairment of land fertility and population growth also contribute in no small measure. Thus, any durable solution must get at most, if not all, of these issues.      

 

Farmers have a right to farm their land unmolested. Herders have a right to raise their livestock without undue interference. However, when conflict between these groups arises to such an extent, we must set forth clear principles and policies to remove the tension, in order to allow both to proceed toward their stated goals and to live in harmony and according to their respective rights. Just as I cannot go into your house and take your shirt because I do not have one of like colour, no one can destroy the crops of a farmer or seize the cattle of a herder simply because such destruction sates their anger or their selfish, short-term interests. If such a condition were to hold, then all would turn into chaos; all would be in jeopardy of being lost. To destroy the crops or seize the property of the innocent farmer or herder is nothing if not an act of criminality.  

 

Here, I must state two fundamental realities. One has been previously mentioned by me and others as part of the solution. The other reality is hardly discussed.  

First, the situation of the herder is becoming untenable. Their nomadic ways fall increasingly in conflict with the dictates of modern society. This way of life is centuries old and steeped in tradition. We can never condone or accept violence as a valid response to any hardship. However, we all must recognize and understand the sense of dislocation caused by the sudden passing of such a longstanding social institution.

 

I mention their dislocation not to excuse violence and other excesses. I raise it to underscore that we must realize the true complexity of this crisis. What is happening has been terrible, but it is not due to any intrinsic evil in either the herder or the farmer. The calamity now being faced is borne of situational exigencies. It is but the tragic outcome when often desperate, alienated people are left too long unattended and when their understanding of the modern socio-economic and environmental forces affecting the very terms of their existence is incomplete. An ethnically fuelled response will be to vociferously defend the nomadic way believing this tack will somehow protect the herder and cast the speaker as an ethnic champion. However, careless words cannot shield the herder from relentless reality. Such talk will only delude him into believing that he can somehow escape the inevitable. We do both herder and farmer grave injustice by allowing the herder to continue as he is – fighting a losing battle against modernity and climate change. In that fight, desperation causes him to flail and fight the farmer, who too is a victim of these impersonal forces.

 

Second, to help the herder and leave the farmer unattended is unfair and will only trigger a resentment that tracks already heated ethnic fault lines. The times have also been perilous for the hardscrabble farmer. He needs help to survive and to be more productive in ways that increases national food security.  Farm productivity and incomes must be enhanced. Soil enrichment, better irrigation and water retention as well as provision of better rural roads, equipment and access to modern machinery are required to lift him above bare subsistence.

 

Both innocent and law-abiding farmer and herder need to be recompensed for the losses they have suffered. Both need further assistance to break the current cycle of violence and poverty. In short, the continued progressive reform of many of our rural socio-economic relationships is called for.

 

Based on these strategic observations, I recommend the federal government convene a meeting of state governors, senior security officials, herder and farmer representatives, along with traditional rulers and religious leaders. The purpose of this meeting would be to hammer out a set of working principles to resolve the crisis.

 

After this meeting, governors of each state should convene follow-up meetings in their states to refine and add flesh to the universal principles by adjusting them to the particular circumstances of their states. In addition to religious and traditional leaders and local farmer and herder representatives, these meetings shall include the state’s best security minds along with experts in agriculture (livestock and farming), land use and water management to draw specific plans for their states.

 

To accomplish this goal, wise policy must include the following elements:

1. Maintain reasonable and effective law enforcement presence in affected areas. The proposed reform of the Nigerian law enforcement apparatus towards state and community policing can help in this regard. The legislative and administrative measures required to make this a reality should be expedited. In addition to alleviating the present farmer-herder crisis, this reform will also bolster efforts against the banditry, kidnapping and robbery plaguing communities across the country. Governments need to employ new technology and equipment to enhance the information gathering/surveillance and response capabilities of law enforcement.  

 

2. Help the herders’ transition to more sedentary but more profitable methods of cattle-rearing. Unoccupied public land can be fenced into grazing areas or ranches and leased to herders on a very low-cost, nominal basis. The leasing is not intended to penalize herders.  Rather, the nominal fee is intended to ensure the herders are invested in the project and incentivized (by reason of their investment) to use the land provided. This aspect will also mitigate any resentment over herders being given land for free. Government, in turn, being a responsible lessor, must help with supplemental feed and water in these areas. This will enable herders to better maintain and care for their livestock thus enhancing their incomes. Herders can augment income by becoming suppliers to the leather goods industry. Additionally, herders can also develop a more symbiotic relationship with farmers by, for example, trading animal compost to the farmer in exchange for animal feed.

 

3. Assist farmers increase productivity by supporting or providing subvention for their acquisition of fertilizer, equipment and machinery and, also, by establishing commodity boards to guarantee minimum prices for important crops. In the medium to long term, resources must be dedicated to establishing better irrigation and water catchment systems to further improve farm productivity and mitigate the dire impact of flood and drought cycles brought about by extreme climatic conditions.

 

4. Establish a permanent panel in each state as a forum for farmers, herders, security officials and senior state officials to discuss their concerns, mitigate contention and identify trouble and douse it before it erupts.    

 

We are a populous nation of diverse ethnic groups. We are a people of potential richness, yet to escape present poverty. We have resources but not wealth. Often, our words speak of hope and fear in the same breath. While we all hope and strive for the best, many fear that there is not enough of what is needed to go around and that they will be left out. In such a situation, harsh competition and contest are fated to occur. In the unfolding of this social dynamic, one group of actors has been pitted against another over dwindling water and fertile ground. The confrontation has resulted in the needless loss of life and destruction of property. If left to itself, this situation may spread and threaten the progress of the nation. It could call into proximate question the utility of the social compact that holds government and governed in positive bond, one to the other. We have a decision to make. Do we attempt the hard things that decency requires of us to right the situation? Or do we allow ourselves to be slave to short term motives that appeal to base instinct that  run afoul of the democratic principles upon which this republic is founded and for which so many have already sacrificed so much? In the question itself, lies the answer.

 

SIGNED

Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.

March 13, 2021.

The herder-farmer dispute has taken on acute and violent dimensions. It has cost too many innocent lives while destroying the property and livelihoods of many others. It has also aggravated ethnic sentiment and political tension. Despite the efforts of some of those in positions of high responsibility and public trust, the crisis has not significantly abated. Sadly, others who should know better have incited matters by tossing about hate-tainted statements that fall dangerously short of the leadership these people claim to provide. We all must get hold of our better selves to treat this matter with the sobriety it requires.

 

Because of the violence that has ensued and the fretful consequences of such violence if left unabated, we must move in unison but decisively to end the spiral of death and destruction. Only when the violence and the illogic of it are halted can logic and reason prevail. Until the violence is rolled back, we cannot resolve the deep problems that underlie this conflict. We will neither be able to uplift the farmer from his impoverished toil nor move the herder toward the historic transformation which he must make.    

 

Yet, as vital as security is to the resolution of this matter, we must realize security measures alone will not suffice. Enhanced security may be the necessary first step, but it cannot be the only step. Nor do we resolve this by hitching ourselves to emotional, one-dimensional answers. More to the point, those who cast this as exclusively a matter of ethnic confrontation are mistaken. This is no time for reckless chauvinism of any kind, on either side of this dispute. This matter is not ethnic in factual origin or actual causation although in the minds and hearts of too many it has become ethnic in recrimination and impulsive action.

 

There have been sporadic disputes in the past but this one is more severe. The reasons for the greater violence of this current dispute are myriad. Economic hardship and its resultant dislocation, proliferation of weapons, generalized increase in criminality, and weakening of social institutions all play a role. Desertification, increased severity and length of the dry season, diminution of water resources, impairment of land fertility and population growth also contribute in no small measure. Thus, any durable solution must get at most, if not all, of these issues.      

 

Farmers have a right to farm their land unmolested. Herders have a right to raise their livestock without undue interference. However, when conflict between these groups arises to such an extent, we must set forth clear principles and policies to remove the tension, in order to allow both to proceed toward their stated goals and to live in harmony and according to their respective rights. Just as I cannot go into your house and take your shirt because I do not have one of like colour, no one can destroy the crops of a farmer or seize the cattle of a herder simply because such destruction sates their anger or their selfish, short-term interests. If such a condition were to hold, then all would turn into chaos; all would be in jeopardy of being lost. To destroy the crops or seize the property of the innocent farmer or herder is nothing if not an act of criminality.  

 

Here, I must state two fundamental realities. One has been previously mentioned by me and others as part of the solution. The other reality is hardly discussed.  

First, the situation of the herder is becoming untenable. Their nomadic ways fall increasingly in conflict with the dictates of modern society. This way of life is centuries old and steeped in tradition. We can never condone or accept violence as a valid response to any hardship. However, we all must recognize and understand the sense of dislocation caused by the sudden passing of such a longstanding social institution.

 

I mention their dislocation not to excuse violence and other excesses. I raise it to underscore that we must realize the true complexity of this crisis. What is happening has been terrible, but it is not due to any intrinsic evil in either the herder or the farmer. The calamity now being faced is borne of situational exigencies. It is but the tragic outcome when often desperate, alienated people are left too long unattended and when their understanding of the modern socio-economic and environmental forces affecting the very terms of their existence is incomplete. An ethnically fuelled response will be to vociferously defend the nomadic way believing this tack will somehow protect the herder and cast the speaker as an ethnic champion. However, careless words cannot shield the herder from relentless reality. Such talk will only delude him into believing that he can somehow escape the inevitable. We do both herder and farmer grave injustice by allowing the herder to continue as he is – fighting a losing battle against modernity and climate change. In that fight, desperation causes him to flail and fight the farmer, who too is a victim of these impersonal forces.

 

Second, to help the herder and leave the farmer unattended is unfair and will only trigger a resentment that tracks already heated ethnic fault lines. The times have also been perilous for the hardscrabble farmer. He needs help to survive and to be more productive in ways that increases national food security.  Farm productivity and incomes must be enhanced. Soil enrichment, better irrigation and water retention as well as provision of better rural roads, equipment and access to modern machinery are required to lift him above bare subsistence.

 

Both innocent and law-abiding farmer and herder need to be recompensed for the losses they have suffered. Both need further assistance to break the current cycle of violence and poverty. In short, the continued progressive reform of many of our rural socio-economic relationships is called for.

 

Based on these strategic observations, I recommend the federal government convene a meeting of state governors, senior security officials, herder and farmer representatives, along with traditional rulers and religious leaders. The purpose of this meeting would be to hammer out a set of working principles to resolve the crisis.

 

After this meeting, governors of each state should convene follow-up meetings in their states to refine and add flesh to the universal principles by adjusting them to the particular circumstances of their states. In addition to religious and traditional leaders and local farmer and herder representatives, these meetings shall include the state’s best security minds along with experts in agriculture (livestock and farming), land use and water management to draw specific plans for their states.

 

To accomplish this goal, wise policy must include the following elements:

1. Maintain reasonable and effective law enforcement presence in affected areas. The proposed reform of the Nigerian law enforcement apparatus towards state and community policing can help in this regard. The legislative and administrative measures required to make this a reality should be expedited. In addition to alleviating the present farmer-herder crisis, this reform will also bolster efforts against the banditry, kidnapping and robbery plaguing communities across the country. Governments need to employ new technology and equipment to enhance the information gathering/surveillance and response capabilities of law enforcement.  

 

2. Help the herders’ transition to more sedentary but more profitable methods of cattle-rearing. Unoccupied public land can be fenced into grazing areas or ranches and leased to herders on a very low-cost, nominal basis. The leasing is not intended to penalize herders.  Rather, the nominal fee is intended to ensure the herders are invested in the project and incentivized (by reason of their investment) to use the land provided. This aspect will also mitigate any resentment over herders being given land for free. Government, in turn, being a responsible lessor, must help with supplemental feed and water in these areas. This will enable herders to better maintain and care for their livestock thus enhancing their incomes. Herders can augment income by becoming suppliers to the leather goods industry. Additionally, herders can also develop a more symbiotic relationship with farmers by, for example, trading animal compost to the farmer in exchange for animal feed.

 

3. Assist farmers increase productivity by supporting or providing subvention for their acquisition of fertilizer, equipment and machinery and, also, by establishing commodity boards to guarantee minimum prices for important crops. In the medium to long term, resources must be dedicated to establishing better irrigation and water catchment systems to further improve farm productivity and mitigate the dire impact of flood and drought cycles brought about by extreme climatic conditions.

 

4. Establish a permanent panel in each state as a forum for farmers, herders, security officials and senior state officials to discuss their concerns, mitigate contention and identify trouble and douse it before it erupts.    

 

We are a populous nation of diverse ethnic groups. We are a people of potential richness, yet to escape present poverty. We have resources but not wealth. Often, our words speak of hope and fear in the same breath. While we all hope and strive for the best, many fear that there is not enough of what is needed to go around and that they will be left out. In such a situation, harsh competition and contest are fated to occur. In the unfolding of this social dynamic, one group of actors has been pitted against another over dwindling water and fertile ground. The confrontation has resulted in the needless loss of life and destruction of property. If left to itself, this situation may spread and threaten the progress of the nation. It could call into proximate question the utility of the social compact that holds government and governed in positive bond, one to the other. We have a decision to make. Do we attempt the hard things that decency requires of us to right the situation? Or do we allow ourselves to be slave to short term motives that appeal to base instinct that  run afoul of the democratic principles upon which this republic is founded and for which so many have already sacrificed so much? In the question itself, lies the answer.

 

SIGNED

Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.

March 13, 2021.

TO ALL FARMERS ON THIS PLATFORM: HOW TO CHASE AWAY HERDS AND HERDSMEN FROM YOUR FARM

TO ALL FARMERS ON THIS PLATFORM: HOW TO CHASE AWAY HERDS AND HERDSMEN FROM YOUR FARM

*•After the rains, some stubborn herdsmen will begin to parade their cows on people's farm provoking tribal clashes.* 


*•We don't need to fight them, we can put them off our farm if we plant some plants at the boundary of the farm and surroundings.* 


*•Jathropha plants, (Lapalapa) naturally animals don't like the smell of this plant.*


*•Senna alata plant (wild water yam) also put animal off.*


*•Castor plant (Egunsi) is very poisonous to animal,God is wonderful. Animals can smell all poisonous plants.*


*•With the little rain we expect, let's get one out of these plants to secure our farm from those intruders.*


*•You can get victory without a battle if you are prepared for peace,  thanks.*


*Kindly Forward as received, this is not hate speech,  but common sense*


*• *Help a farmer*

*•After the rains, some stubborn herdsmen will begin to parade their cows on people's farm provoking tribal clashes.* 


*•We don't need to fight them, we can put them off our farm if we plant some plants at the boundary of the farm and surroundings.* 


*•Jathropha plants, (Lapalapa) naturally animals don't like the smell of this plant.*


*•Senna alata plant (wild water yam) also put animal off.*


*•Castor plant (Egunsi) is very poisonous to animal,God is wonderful. Animals can smell all poisonous plants.*


*•With the little rain we expect, let's get one out of these plants to secure our farm from those intruders.*


*•You can get victory without a battle if you are prepared for peace,  thanks.*


*Kindly Forward as received, this is not hate speech,  but common sense*


*• *Help a farmer*

FG has been protecting herders since 1986

FG has been protecting herders since 1986


Straight to the point, I was a victim of the herders as far back as 1986 on my 25 acre farm at Ipapo near Iseyin. I borrowed money from Nig. Agricultural and Cooperative Bank, Orita Mefa, Ibadan and cultivated 20 acres for maize, 4 acres for Cassava. Two weeks to my harvesting, they herded their cows and finished every corn(improved seedlings from Leventis then) planted with combined planter which was dropping fertiliser beside the two or three seeds planted then. The corn seeds were beautiful and each stalk had 2 or 3 cubs. They finished everything, and moved to the next farm where unfortunately the owner was resident there. The man shot into the air and when the cows refused to leave his farm, he shot and killed a cow. Look at the two scenarios:-


1. Out of the herdsmen that came to my farm, one person was arrested by the police and I was invited. I gave the police money for the prisoner's upkeep & feeding for a week pending his been arraigned in court soonest. To my utter dismay, the police told me they man was sick and they had to release him on the third day to the Seriki Fulani of Iseyin so that he will not die in their custody. I asked them why? They said from their interrogation the man told them then that he was only employed three days to that fateful day at Kishi in Oyo State (North of Iseyin) and did not know who the real owner of the cattle was. That was the end of the story. I had to find means of refunding the Agric loan got from NACB, Orita mefa Ibadan. I never went back to farming again despite the fact that from the gains I made the previous year, I was able to buy a 2nd hand Peugeot 404 pick -up then for N6000 only.


2. The man( my neighbour on the farm) who had the effontry to kill one cow was asked to be prosecuted from Dodan Barracks then and he was made to pay for 10 cows or go to prison for six months. He found money and paid for cows that did havoc on his farm having killed just one of them.


Brethren that was the last time I showed up on the 25 acre farm till date


If I have to support Sunday Igboho for my children and grandchildren to enjoy their lives in future, I will gladly do so.


Please you are free to share it to any platform.


Ven Engr Oluseye Ogunrinde


Straight to the point, I was a victim of the herders as far back as 1986 on my 25 acre farm at Ipapo near Iseyin. I borrowed money from Nig. Agricultural and Cooperative Bank, Orita Mefa, Ibadan and cultivated 20 acres for maize, 4 acres for Cassava. Two weeks to my harvesting, they herded their cows and finished every corn(improved seedlings from Leventis then) planted with combined planter which was dropping fertiliser beside the two or three seeds planted then. The corn seeds were beautiful and each stalk had 2 or 3 cubs. They finished everything, and moved to the next farm where unfortunately the owner was resident there. The man shot into the air and when the cows refused to leave his farm, he shot and killed a cow. Look at the two scenarios:-


1. Out of the herdsmen that came to my farm, one person was arrested by the police and I was invited. I gave the police money for the prisoner's upkeep & feeding for a week pending his been arraigned in court soonest. To my utter dismay, the police told me they man was sick and they had to release him on the third day to the Seriki Fulani of Iseyin so that he will not die in their custody. I asked them why? They said from their interrogation the man told them then that he was only employed three days to that fateful day at Kishi in Oyo State (North of Iseyin) and did not know who the real owner of the cattle was. That was the end of the story. I had to find means of refunding the Agric loan got from NACB, Orita mefa Ibadan. I never went back to farming again despite the fact that from the gains I made the previous year, I was able to buy a 2nd hand Peugeot 404 pick -up then for N6000 only.


2. The man( my neighbour on the farm) who had the effontry to kill one cow was asked to be prosecuted from Dodan Barracks then and he was made to pay for 10 cows or go to prison for six months. He found money and paid for cows that did havoc on his farm having killed just one of them.


Brethren that was the last time I showed up on the 25 acre farm till date


If I have to support Sunday Igboho for my children and grandchildren to enjoy their lives in future, I will gladly do so.


Please you are free to share it to any platform.


Ven Engr Oluseye Ogunrinde

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