BY Seriki Adinoyi in Jos
Against the backdrop of the many attacks by Fulani herdsmen on Plateau State, Governor Simon Bako Lalong has said government feels the pains of the displaced persons who are now refugees in their home state.
The governor, who said this at the weekend during the 2017 Nzem Berom Cultural Festival themed: â€˜Culture and Education as Tools for Unity and Progress in Berom landâ€™, added: â€œI will not fail to quickly mention that government is aware that there are displaced villagers stretching from Riyom to Barkin Ladi amongst which are Jol, Kwi, Rim, Bachit and Gashish where inhabitants are experiencing threats and the trauma of resettlement and reintegration after they were attacked.
Â â€œIn our current efforts through the Peace Building Agency, we have established, and will accelerate the post-conflict transformation and reintegration of the people. The humanitarian challenges in these areas have to be addressed through the efforts of government, the communities, humanitarian and faith-based organisations. The human security and state security component will continue to be addressed too. We will ensure that we identify and isolate healthy conflicts over land resources from sheer acts of criminality and brigandage. This we will do through community participation and effective policing so our people can fully settle to a life free of threat and build our families in an environment of peace.â€
Also speaking at the event, the senator representing Plateau North zone in the National Assembly, Jonah David Jang, called on the entire Berom nation to support the education of their children towards actualising the noble course.
He said: â€œAgainst this backdrop, on behalf of my family and the entire people of Plateau North senatorial district, I wish to felicitate with His Royal Majesty, Gbong Gwom Jos, Jacob Gyang Buba and the entire Berom Nation as it celebrates this yearâ€™s Nzem Berom.â€
Â The denator said he wished and prayed that the celebration will bring more unity, love, peace, friendship, togetherness and progress to the Berom nation, to the glory of God.â€
The festival was witnessed by an unprecedented crowd, and a display of uncanny aspects of the Berom culture, where the stakeholders brandished series of locally made weapons to entertain visitors and spectators at the event.
On his part, Director General of National Centre for Arts and Culture, Mr. Segun Runsewe, who represented the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, eulogised the Berom tradition noted that â€œyou are the custodian if culture in the history of this country. Donâ€™t forget that the first hotel in Nigeria reside here in Jos, The Rest House. The white man in 1915 said: â€œI will come back any day to Jos because Jos is my home.â€ This man was buried in Jos, but the families are still asking questions: â€œWhere is our man?â€, come to the best city where you find the best weather and find your man.
â€œI went to South Africa, they said to me they have the Zulus, and they are not as beautiful as the Berom people. I want to tell Gbong Gwom Jos that this is the original culture of Nigeria. I believe that if any white man comes to this place, he will be so happy to see the true traditional culture of our great country.â€Â