The Governor of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola has described the Fulani herdsmen activities as a product of disregard for their immediate environment rather than an ethical issue.
The Governor also challenged Nigeria to be strong and bond to take the leadership role of leading the black man to the zenith of the world.
The Governor spoke in Ado-Ekiti during a visit and an interactive session he held with students at the Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti.
Aregbesola said it is wrong to see the issue of the Fulani herdsmen as just an ethnic issue or from the political angle, saying most of their action is as a result of the primitive way things are still being handled in the country.
He stated further that they did not just become wild because they are herdsmen but because Nigeria as a nation has completely disregarded the environment and because nobody has cared to help them.
While emphasising that their actions are not justifiable, he noted that the root of the problem is the poor economy and the underdevelopment of the country.
He however explained that the challenges posed by the Fulani herdsmen could be turned into a huge business and economic development opportunity if the right approach is used to tackle the issue.
The Governor stressed that he expects scholars from the various universities across the country to begin to engage in researches and come up with ideas to produce pasture and other feeds which the cattles in Nigeria can use to feed all year round, saying the cattle herdsmen will be willing to buy it.
According to Aregbesola, “as much as I condemn the activities of the Fulani herdsmen, I think it is not about one ethnic group, my personal opinion is that we have not given them an alternative as a people.
“I am sure they too can not say they enjoy the manner in which they roam about with their cattles, the challenge is caused by the primitive nature we still do things in this part of the world, it is caused by our total disregard of our environment and because we have never cared to look at how to help these herdsmen.
“The challenge is also about poverty and our refusal to begin to use our God-given knowledge as a people to solve our myriad societal problems we have as a nation of which the herdsmen killings is among.
“For emphasis, I am not justifying the criminality of the herdsmen, in fact I condemn it in all totality, I am only saying the root cause of the problem is our poor economy and our refusal to develop ourselves.
“I want to tell you that there is a business angle which can help nip this crisis in the bud, but it is a pity that we are not looking into it.
“If our scholars through our universities can look inwards and find an alternative to the herdsmen grazing the land indiscriminately with their cattles, I think the herdsmen too will embrace it and be willing to pay for it which I see as a business opportunity”. Aregbesola said.
The Osun governor also used the event to challenge Nigeria as a nation to rise up to the challenge of being the rallying point of Africans and all black men all over the world, saying if the black man must succeed then Nigeria must not fail as a nation.