Fulani Herdsmen Attacks Pushing Nigeria Towards The ‘Precipice’ – Mimiko

Olusegun-MimikoFollowing violent attacks by suspected Fulani herdsmen in Ondo State, Governor Olusegun Mimiko has raised the alarm that Nigeria may be heading for the rocks if the incessant killings are not checked.
The governor said the issue of Fulani herdsmen rampage had become a budding monster that is threatening the security and unity of the country.
He spoke in Akure, the state capital on Monday during a peace meeting with members of the Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC).
The Ondo governor said the situation demands a national emergency, and called on President Muhammadu Buhari and other leaders to put heads together to save the nation from imminent catastrophe.
“There is no question about the fact that this is becoming a monster of sort. I have had cause to express my view on this on many occasion and I think we all ignore this menace as a nation”, he said.
“I can see us moving towards a precipice and we must do something about it as early as possible, it is getting dangerous, the audacity is very disturbing”.
Gov. Mimiko specifically condemned the recent attack on the farm of the former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Chief Olu Falae, and the killing of one of the guards, Ayodele Ige, by suspected herdsmen.
He described the development as unfortunate and barbaric.
The governor appealed to the OPC members not to take laws into their hands over the killing of Ige, who was their member.
He also commended the all the security operatives in the state for rising to the occasion, adding that the police had been supportive, having successfully traced those behind the killing of the guard.
Mr. Mimiko further warned that if his advice was not heeded, it may reach a stage where people would resort to self-help.
“I say it again, we are moving towards the precipice and the earlier we pull back, and it requires all the stakeholders from the president and this is a bi-partisan issue, all major stakeholders must come together on how to resolve this issue”, he said.
“These herdsmen must be called to order, these wanton destructions, audacious incursions in other people’s territory cannot continue for too long”.
Mr. Mimiko noted that the activities of the Fulani herdsmen would not only pose a threat to national security but a great challenge to food security especially when people are calling for the diversification of the economy with agriculture as the main focus.
“It is very ironical, we have been talking about diversification and agriculture is the main focus but in this state there is hardly any medium scale or large scale farmers that has not had any encounter or the other with the herdsmen”, he said.
“They just go to the farm and devastate the farms, some of them have been turned to perpetual debtors because some of the input for the farms are from bank loans, the herdsmen will just get there and destroy these farmlands and we are talking of diversification.
“But I think if we don’t do anything about the activities of these herdsmen, I can see a threat to the security of this country so it is a major challenge and I think the President and all major stakeholders should take this as a very serious challenge”.
Mr. Mimiko also faulted the proposed Fulani grazing reserves bill by the National Assembly, saying if passed into law, it would further worsen the crisis between the land owners, farmers and the Fulani herdsmen.


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