The Kwara State Government is to strengthen existing security and peace committees in all 16 local government areas in the State as a way of forestalling clashes between Fulani herdsmen and farmers.
This was one of the resolutions of the Kwara State Security Committee meeting held on Wednesday at the Government House, Ilorin, and chaired by the State Governor, Alhaji Abdulfatah Ahmed.
The Committee resolved that the LG security and peace committees are to monitor, assess and manage security situations manage and prevent escalation.
The committees, which consist of all stakeholders and security agencies in the local governments including farmers and herdsmen, are also to identify means of compensation where necessary.
The Kwara State Security Committee also resolved that the Police should look seriously into the issue of illegal arms possession in the State with a view to curbing violence and other criminal acts.
To this end, the State Police Command was directed to engage in massive advocacy in partnership with the State government to enlighten the public on permissible and non-permissible arms in the State.
The Committee also approved that a seminar be organized for traditional rulers and leaders of thought to identify better ways of promoting stronger harmony and cohesion in communities across the State, especially between farmers and herdsmen. The seminar is also to promote the use of dialogue and stakeholder engagement.
Furthermore, the Committee mandated security agencies to pay special attention to the issue of illegal miners to avoid land degradation and control situations that can threaten peace and security in local communities.
The Committee also urged all citizens and residents of the State to remain vigilant and report any suspicious movement or activity to security agencies in order to prevent infiltration of undesirable elements into the State.
Speaking at the end of the meeting, Governor Ahmed noted that clashes between farmers and herdsmen have become a serious security challenge that needs urgent remedial actions in order to maintain the State’s reputation as a home of peace and harmony.
He, therefore, called on all citizens and residents of the State to remain calm and avoid taking law into their own hands. The State Security Committee meeting also had in attendance the State Deputy Governor, Elder Peter Kishira, Emir of Ilorin, Alhaji Ibrahim Sulu-Gambari as well as heads of all security agencies and paramilitary institutions such as NDLEA, FRSC, Immigration and Customs.