Benue Anti-grazing Law: Herdsmen to Move 10 Million Cows to Nasarawa

Following the enactment of the anti-grazing bill by Samuel Ortom-led Benue State Government, about 10 million cows owned by members of the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association (MACBAN )will have to be moved from Benue to the neighbouring Nasarrawa State, Awe Local Government.

According to the Chairman of the association, the association was collaborating with the Nigerian Army, the police and other relevant stakeholders in Nasarawa State to forestall any breakdown of law and order.

Chiding Governor Ortom for not finding alternative means of grazing for herdsmen before enacting the anti-grazing bill the MACBAN Chairman reportedly told journalist that, “Our major problem is fear of our cows, particularly since farmers have yet to harvest their crops from their farms.

“We are in difficult situation. We are trying our best to ensure that peace reigns between us and the host community in Awe.”

A farmer in Awe, Abigail Bitraus , said she had to quickly rush to her farm to harvest her rice when she heard about the cattle being moved in by the herdsmen; even though, it was not the appropriate time to do so.

She said, “The large number of Fulani herdsmen and their cows scare me. When I learnt that they were relocating from Benue State to Nasarawa State, I had to rush to my farm to harvest my rice.”

Whereas, Governor Umaru Tanko Al-Makura of Nasarawa State said he had already set up a committee in all the local government areas adjoining Benue State to monitor the movement and the migration of the Fulani herdsmen, warning that the destruction of farmlands and attacks on homes would not be tolerated.

Ortom Meets Buhari Over Herdsmen/Farmers Crisis In Benue

The Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, on Tuesday, met President Muhammadu Buhari over the growing security concerns in the state.

The Governor also discussed with Mr. President over the threats emanating from Meyyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria plans to make the state’s Anti-Open Grazing Act Impossible.

Ortom while addressing newsmen after his meeting with the president said; “I came to brief Mr. President on the security situation in my state, about the threat by Miyetti Allah members that have even taken us to court; the threat that they will make the Anti-Open Grazing Act impossible for the people of Benue State.

Ortom also intimated Mr. President on the general security situation in the state. He however promised to do everything possible to protect lives and property of the people.

He said his administration would start the implementation of the Act by November 1 despite opposition by the herdsmen.

“Those who want to stay in Benue State and do cattle business must ranch their cattles, this is what we are saying.

“As far as we are concerned the law is not targeted at any individual, group of people or ethnic group. It is meant to protect everyone who is living in Benue State.

“Miyetti Allah has taken us to court and we are there with them. But I don’t see how they will come and overrun Benue and make it ungovernable, it is not going to be accepted.”

He added, “We stand by what we have done; we have played our legitimate, lawful role as governor as citizens of the state. So, we don’t see how somebody will sit somewhere and say that we should not implement a law that has restored peace to our place.

“If you want to bring confusion, I want to assure you that I have directed the security men to arrest those people. I am calling for the arrest of the leadership of Miyetti Allah, to be prosecuted to serve as deterrent.”

Ortom also said that there was no other credible candidate for the 2019 presidential election that had the capacity to move Nigeria forward apart from President Muhammadu Buhari.

While saying he was happy seeing Buhari “bouncing every day,” the governor prayed that God would help the President to lead the nation till 2023.

“I came to appreciate the President and to encourage him to be steadfast and committed to his leadership.

“I believe that what God brought him to achieve in this country, he will definitely achieve it.

“Now we see him bouncing every day to the glory of God. We appreciate this and we look forward that God will help him to take us through 2015 to 2019 and then 2019 to 2023,” he said, adding, “for now, there is no credible candidate as far as I know that has the capacity to take Nigeria out of where we are today.”

Again, Suspected Herdsmen Kill 12 In Taraba

At least 12 people were killed by suspected Fulani herdsmen between Sunday and Monday at Gazabu, Tukun Ruwa, Utsua Daa, Kungana and Kpenkpen villages in Bali Local Government Area of Taraba State.
Besides, scores of people sustained serious injuries in the attack and are currently receiving treatment at the Bali General Hospital.

This is coming barely 10 days after similar attacks on Takum and Ussa Local Government Areas left no fewer than 18 people dead.
Though the state Police Public Relations Officer, David Missal, said three persons were killed in the attack, the Chief of Tiv in Bali, Zaki David Gbaa, said 12 people, including a one-week-old baby were killed by the herdsmen.

Gbaa, who is the Chairman, Council of Tiv traditional rulers in the state, condemned the incessant attacks on Tivs in the area, saying the attacks are being carried out deliberately to dispossess his people of their ancestral lands.

He wondered why such attacks are not being carried out in Daka district also in Bali and Mutum Biyu district in Gassol Local Government Area just as he urged Governor Darius Ishaku to hold the local chiefs in the areas accountable for the crisis.

While commending the governor for the steps he has taken so far to restore peace in the area, he appealed to the state House of Assembly to investigate the crisis with a view to bringing a permanent solution to the incessant attacks on his people.

He, however, appealed to the government to urgently provide relief materials for the internally displaced persons (IDPs)  who abandoned their homes for safety and have swelled the IDP camps in Bali.
Narrating the ordeal of the displaced persons to journalists who visited the camp yesterday, the camp leader, Mr. Matthew Baki, said the challenges facing the people includes water, shelter, food and exposure to all forms of diseases.

“Just yesterday, two women delivered here without access to medical facility and one of the children died hours after delivery. And as you can see,  we are all sleeping outside in this open field and it has been raining since we came in here. We are exposed to all forms of diseases. We want the government to end the crisis to enable us return to our homes and farms,” he said.

Fielding questions from journalists, the Lamdo Bakundi, Alhaji Misa Gidado, who is the traditional ruler of Bali, said he has been holding series of meetings with stakeholders in the area to ensure a quick end to the crisis, and appealed to both the Fulani herders and Tiv farmers to embrace peace.

It was gathered that 1,765 people are currently camping at the Tiv Council Hall,  St. Paul’s Catholic Church and NKST Church all in Bali town while the number is expected to increase in the days ahead as more people troop into the camps to take refuge.
Also, five persons were killed and six other injured in suicide attacks on Konduga, a town in Borno State, the police said on Tuesday.

The police in a statement by its spokesman in the state, Victor Isuku, said the incident occurred on Monday night at about 9:30.
He revealed that the attacks were by three female suicide bombers who all lost their lives in the incident, that equally claimed two other lives and had six others injured.

The statement read: “Information received from District Police Officer Konduga, has it that on 15/5/17 at about 21:30 hours, three female suicide bombers detonated improvised explosive devices (IEDs) strapped on their bodies at Shuwa settlement of Mandarari Ward Konduga , killing themselves and two others.
“While six persons sustained injuries. Normalcy had been restored.”

Blood Bath In Niger As Herdsmen Attack

The Imam of Etogi village in Gbara ward of Mokwa Local Government Area in Niger State was among the 21 persons reportedly killed by suspected herdsmen on Saturday morning.

The imam was said to be leading 20 other faithful in an early morning prayer, when the herdsmen attacked them with dangerous weapons and embarked on a killing spree.

Eight other members of the community who were not inside the mosque were equally attacked and wounded.

An eyewitness said those injured had been taken to the Mokwa General Hospital for treatment.

He told newsmen that the attack by the herdsmen was a reprisal for killing of a herdsman by the villagers during a disagreement.

He said the disagreement occurred between some Fulani youths and members of the community.

The herdsmen were said to have maintained a settlement near the community on the understanding that a percentage of the proceeds from their harvest would go to the village head.

However a disagreement was said to have ensued when the herdsmen failed to remit the agreed fee to the village head at the end of the last cropping season.

The herdsmen, it was learnt, later claimed that the parcel of land belonged to them.

But the community was said to have demanded for the agreed amount, a development that led to a free for all fight, resulting in the death of one of the herdsmen.

This was said to have infuriated the herdsmen who reportedly mobilised support and unleashed mayhem on the villagers on Saturday morning, leading to the death of the 21 persons.

“The attackers killed everybody in the mosque, including the Imam,” one of the eyewitnesses said.

The disturbance, it was learnt, caused commotion in the village, forcing women and children who were woken by the disturbance to flee.

Police public relations officer in the state, DSP Bala Elkana, when contacted, confirmed the incident, but said “20 people were killed during the early morning attack”.

Elkana described the attack as “a reprisal’ for an earlier killing of a herdsman by the villagers.

“The killing of a herdsman was managed but it appears they were not satisfied and decided to retaliate,” Elkana stated, adding that eight people sustained various degrees of injuries during the attack.

The police spokesman said mobile policemen, operatives of the Department of the State Services (DSS), and other security agencies had been deployed to the troubled community to restore law and order.

Source: This Day

Fulani Herdsmen Ordered Out Of Campus – UNIUYO

Prof. Enefiok Essien, the Vice-Chancellor, University of Uyo (UNIUYO), has ordered herdsmen, operating within the university community, to relocate their cattle from the campus within two weeks.

Essien, who made the call at a meeting with the herdsmen, led by their head, Alhaji Farouk Miyetti Allah, in Uyo on Monday, said that the action would prevent cattle from constituting a nuisance to the environment.

According to a statement by the university’s Director of Public Relations, Mr Godfrey Essien, the vice-chancellor said that the order became imperative as part of efforts to promote peace and unity on the university campus.

The deadline that was given to the herdsmen, which began on April 28, would expire on May 11.

Essien noted that herds of cattle were constantly moving around the university main campus and called on the herdsmen to restrain their cattle from entering the institution to avoid conflicts.

The vice-chancellor also directed the Chief Security Officer of the university, retired Lt.-Col. Nkana Efik, to liaise with the herdsmen in efforts to relocate the cattle from the campus within the time frame.

Essien thanked all the parties at the meeting for their useful contributions, understanding and commitment to ensuring peace and unity in the university.

Fulani/Tiv Crisis: Three Killed In Benue

Governor Samuel Ortom confirmed this on Monday while speaking with newsmen in his office in Makurdi.

On how suspected Fulani herdsmen stormed Tse Akaa village, Ugondo Mbanar District of Logo Local Government Area of Benue State Sunday afternoon, leading to the killing of three persons.

The report gathered from our reliable source was said that trouble started Sunday afternoon when the villagers challenged the herdsmen who were moving their cattle away from the area.

Sources said the development raised fear among the villagers who thought that the herdsmen’s movement was an attempt to reinforce and attack the village.

It was gathered that the herders resisted the villagers, and the incident snowballed into a serious fighting.

An eyewitness who identified himself as Terver said the herdsmen, without provocation, launched the attack on the villagers around 5pm at the time some of the villagers were coming out from Sunday evening service.

He, however, denied that the villagers’ action triggered the crisis, saying, some of the villagers were coming out of evening service when the herders began to shoot sporadically at them, and in the process, three persons died.

Terver added that several persons were injured and many others missing.

He said that many people were presently taking refuge at a nearby village.

The source alleged that the attackers came from the Taraba axis, through Abaji, Mbamar, Ugondo and emerged at Akaa, shooting sporadically at the village market square.

The State Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Moses Yamu, who confirmed the report said the suspected Fulani herdsmen who were relocating from the area as a result of the onset of the rainy season had a clash with the villagers.

“Three persons were killed in the process, but the Police immediately mobilised to the area and I can assure you that peace has been restored there.”

Governor Ortom, who confirmed the incident, enjoined both farmers and herders to always show patience.

Fulani Herdsmen Raid Wole Soyinks’s Residence

Some suspected herdsmen have invaded the residence of Wole Soyinka, renowned playwright and professor, in Ogun state.

The Nobel laureate disclosed this on Friday while speaking at a forum in Freedom Park, Lagos.

“We are living in dangerous times. My home is under invasion… From Imeko to Abeokuta is under invasion by herdsmen,” he said.

“This is a deliberate act of provocation. The trespasses have been frequent, we have reported to the police, but the government is taking security lightly. We need to wake up the government, let them know the seriousness of the issue on the ground; these herdsmen are worse than Boko Haram.”

Soyinka, who said the mentality of herdsmen had changed, advised the government to use a drone in tracking them.

He also opposed the establishment of grazing reserves, saying that would worsen the problem.

“Creating corridor for cattle grazing will compound the problem, I do not think that is the solution,” he said.

In April 2016, Soyinka had raised the alarm over the invasion of his residence at a time when he was abroad.

Herdsmen Kills Six, Three Others Injured

Tse-Wuaswem in Guma Local Government Area of Benue State has been attacked by  suspected Fulani Herdsmen killing six farmers, according to locals.

The attack which occurred at the council ward just a few kilthe state Governor, Samuel Ortom, according to an eyewitness who pleaded anonymity, said at least six persons were killed and several others injured while many others are still missing.

Sole administration of the area, Mr. Joseph Apera, who confirmed the incident in a telephone conversation with journalists, said only one person was killed while three others were seriously injured.
Apera said the incident occurred at about 9p.m. last Sunday in Saav district while the people were asleep.


“There was no provocation. They just came in, matcheted the person and ran away.  Before then, there had been high influx of cattle in the area.
Guma, the home of Ortom, has incessantly been attacked by herdsmen resulting in many deaths and destruction of property.

When contacted, the state Police Public Relation Officer (PPRO), Yamu, disclosed that the police received a report from DGSA of Guma on April 24 that herdsmen killed somebody at Tse-Wasem village of Tsev district.

He said the Division Police Officer (DPO) led policemen to the area and met one Shiku Bafum, 50, who stated that on April 23 at about 11.30p.m., he and his younger brother named Kulegwa Bafum were attacked by unknown herdsmen in their compound, adding that the headsmen matcheted Kulegwa Bafum to death and injured him with a cutlass on his left leg.

While those injured were taking to the hospital, the police spokesman said six herdsmen were arrested even as the case is under investigation.


Herdsman Killing In Benue State, 6 Feared Dead

Npayango Federal Highway, Benue youths on Thursday were in protest over the reported attack and killing in Tse Igba Uke and Aliade villages in Gwer Local Government Area of the state by suspected herdsmen on Wednesday night.

The youths killed six persons during the protest, leaving travellers stranded along the highway, which is a major route to the southern part of the country.

The Benue State Police Public Relations Officer, ASP. Joel Moses confirmed that six persons were killed by the youths, adding that the command had to use “minimum force to disperse the protesters.”

He said, “The youths barricaded the Npanyango Road and also killed six motorists who they suspected to be Fulani herdsmen, so we had to deploy our men who used minimum force to disperse them.”

Moses could not give the number of suspects arrested in connection with the disturbance, saying policemen were still at the scene of the crime.

He said the suspected herdsmen carried out the attack on Wednesday night, following an attack on their cattle by some youths of the village.

According to him, the corpse of the villager killed by suspected herdsmen had been deposited at the Aliade General Hospital and the injured receiving treatment in the same hospital.

The police spokesman, however, warned against jungle justice.


Source: Punch

Osun Farmers Advised Against Illegal Harbouring of Fulani/Bororo Herdsmen

Farmers in the State of Osun have been advised to desist from illegal harbouring of Fulani/Bororo cattle rearers in their community so as to guide against farmland destruction commonly caused by cattle grazing on cultivated farmlands in the State of Osun

The Committee Chairman on peaceful coexistence between Fulani/Bororo and Farmers in the State of Osun, Hon Mudasiru Oguntola Toogun gave this advice while addressing the people of Ajenisuwa Village, Oke Osun, Osogbo during an on-the-spot assessment of a Cassava and Plantain farm that was destroyed by cattle grazing in the area.

Hon Toogun who went in company of some officers of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), with the aim to apprehend the perpetrators of the painful act, described farming activities as difficult task that requires energy and time. He noted that it would be painful for farmers to lose such an energy and time to cows that move freely and graze around cultivated farm lands.

He further disclosed that such a painful development could not be possible without the support and cooperation of the saboteurs among the farmers that harbour herdsmen illegally in the area.

He stressed that, the Government of the State of Osun led by Ogbeni Rauf Adesoji Aregbesola is not against Fulani/Bororo staying in any part of the State but they must be ready to adhere to rules and regulations to forestall peace.

He therefore directed the people of Ajenisuwa Community to fish out the illegal Fulani/Bororo herdsmen in the area and their accomplices to avoid further damage on farm crops.

Hon Toogun who was amazed when he saw over seven thousand cows grazing within the farm settlement area during the visit, recounted the past experience to the people of the area that Bororo people are always armed and aggressive to attack at any time.

He also implored farmers not to argue or fight with any cattle rearer that may offend them but rather report their unwholesome activities to Fulani/Bororo Committee or Law enforcement agents.

Also speaking, Baale Ajenisuwa Village, Prince Musibau Oyedele and Seriki Fulani in the State of Osun, Alhaji Sulaiman Oluwatoyin both appreciated the Governor, Ogbeni Rauf Adesoji Aregbesola’s peace moves and promised their unalloyed cooperation and support to make Osun the most peaceful State in the Country.

We Have Settled Over 5000 Cases in Osun – Mudashir Toogun

The Chairman of Committee on Resolution of Crisis Between farmers and herdsmen in Osun, Hon. Mudashir Toogun, has said his committee had handled and settled over 5,000 cases involving farmers and Fulani cattle rearers across the state in the last three years.

He disclosed this at a farmers meeting in Onilapa farm, Olaoluwa Local Government Area of the state, where some rice farmers met, and rice farms inspected.

Toogun noted that the incessant clash between Fulani herdsmen and farmers became the most threatening crisis after Boko Haram insurgency in all the federating units.

He commended the governor for setting up a committee to interface with these two groups and ensured sustainable peace, making farming more easier and profitable in the state.

He explained that the pro-activeness of the governor in setting up the committee prior to the outbreak of the farmer-herdsmen crisis in the state helped in no small way to forestall any crisis and ensure that both farmers and herdsmen live harmoniously without blemish.

“We are able to be on top of the situation in the state because of the pro-activeness of government in providing a platform for all actors to meet and dialogue among themselves.

“This has helped us a great deal and with this intercession, we have settled not less than 5,000 cases between 2014 and now.

“This is why Osun State is the most peaceful today when you think of farmers-herdsmen crises ravaging the country,” Toogun said.

However, rice farming and livestock expert, Mr. Olafare Richard has identified the potentials of Osun in rice production, saying that with available resources and necessary equipment, coupled with enabling environment, Osun can produce enough rice for South-West consumption.

He revealed that Osun State has about 60 percent of the most productive rice seedlings that can be found in the whole country, lamenting that the best of the opportunities of this seed have not been realised.

He called on the government to further support rice farmers so as to improve their productivity.