Farmers/Herders clash: MCN supports Yobe govt, adopts public policy dialogue

As the conflict between farmers and continue to linger, stakeholders have identified increase in population, influx of foreign herders, encroachment on farm lands, non-availability of water and grazing reserves as the major factors responsible.

The technical team leader, of European Union Managing Conflict in North-east Nigeria, Dr. Ukoha Ukiwo, disclosed this in Damaturu the Yobe state capital at a one-day public policy dialogue to sensitize stakeholders on the need to accommodate each other.

Dr. Ukiwo revealed that, the farmers/herders conflict which had been in existence for some decades has posed threat to national survival.

“The conflict between farmers and herders has been a major source of concern in Africa and Nigeria is mentioned among the African countries badly bedeviled by this conflict on an annual basis.

“In 2018, we heard a report that incidences of farmers and herders conflict have become deadlier, six times deadlier than even the insurgency and so we are bringing the stakeholders together to dialogue on how to live in peace with one another” he explains.

The Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources who represented Governor Mai Mala Buni, said the state government had received approval of the federal government to establish a Livestock Development centre at Jakusko/Nasari Grazing Reserve which is about 50 thousand hectares wide to strengthen peaceful coexistence between the crop and the livestock farmers.

Amshi also revealed, water points, nomadic schools as well as seed multiplication pastures would be provided at the grazing reserves inorder to avert further conflicts.

The National Secretary of the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria, Baba Uthman, revealed the steps taken by the Yobe state government with the support from Managing Conflict in Northeast Nigeria is very key considering the challenges faced as result of the insurgency.

The State Team Leader of the MCN, Abdulkadir Sambo, earlier in his welcome address explained the aim of the dialogue was to ensure mutual understanding as well as receive suggestions that would help in mitigating any form of misunderstanding.

The public dialogue drew participants from government, security agents, traditional leaders, Fulani groups as well as association of crop farmers.