Leadership Of Miyetti Allah Blames Politicians For Lingering Herders/Farmers’ Clash
The leadership of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN), has blamed politicians for the lingering herders/farmers’ clashes.
The National Secretary of the association, Baba Othman Ngelzarma, who disclosed this on Wednesday at a meeting with Edo State chapter of MACBAN and farmers, held at the State Police Officers’ mess in Benin City, said politicians see the clashes as “fertile ground” for selfish political gains.
Ngelzarma expressed concern that politicians have given herdsmen unprintable names and declared:
“We are not a terrorist group. We are peace loving. That is why the Sultan of Sokoto is the Chairman of MACBAN BOT, and that was why he gave us the mandate to fish out the criminals and identify the problems responsible for herdsmen attacks,” he said.
Ngelzarma however condemned reported violence and other atrocities allegedly perpetrated, describing it as crime perpetrated by criminals.
This is even as he explained that genuine herders are also at the receiving end from the activities of cattle rustlers.
“These criminal herdsmen go about with arms. When they see harmless herders, they attack them, steal their cows and we have lost over two million cattle.
“It’s unfortunate that most media houses are not being fair to us, their stories are lopsided,” Ngelzarma said.
He lauded the State CP, Mr. Johnson Kokumo and Governor Godwin Obaseki, for the meeting, and urged other State Governors to emulate same.
“We are reaching out to Governors who will cooperate with us so that we can work with the farming communities to bring lasting peace,” he said.
Earlier in his remark, the CP, Mr Kokumo, said the meeting was geared towards finding a lasting solution to farmers/herders clashes and ensures that both are law abiding.
A spokesman for the farmers, Mr. Osadolor Odumamwen, who expressed satisfaction with the meeting, added: “I look forward to see if their people (herders) will refrain from destruction of our crops.”