Eight persons have been killed in a clash between farmers and herders in Bayo Local Government Area, Borno State, over alleged land encroachment, according to the Borno State Police Command.
Disclosing this on Friday in Maiduguri, the police commissioner, Abdu Umar, discussed the issue with representatives of the farmer organization and the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association.
He said the report indicated that violence erupted on November 30, over the alleged encroachment of farmlands and the murder of a farmer by unidentified assailants in the area.
“Eight persons killed including children while 47 houses and six motorcycles were burnt,” he said.
He said the police had restored normalcy to the area and arrested some suspects in connection with the disturbances, adding that the state government had provided relief items to the affected persons.
“This is a source of concern to the government and security agencies, the meeting is aimed at providing lasting solutions to the problem.
“At the end, we shall come up with modalities to check the movement of wandering herders into the state, especially in areas that witnessed violence,” he said.
According to him, a committee will be set up to enhance surveillance and monitoring as well as promote peaceful coexistence between farmers and herders.
He said membership of the committee would comprise representatives of security agencies, farmers and herders associations.
In his remarks, Ahmadu Musa-Karube, Chairman of the MACBAN, called for proactive measures to address the root cause of the problem.
Musa-Karube said that the lack of cattle routes and encroachment of farmlands were largely responsible for farmer/herder clashes in the state.
Also speaking, Hassan Musa, a farmer representative, advocated a ban on night animal grazing in the state.
He also called for closer collaboration between the leadership of the farmers and herders’ unions to address the problem.