John Shiklam in Kaduna
The Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN), on Saturday said the porous nature of Nigerian borders were responsible for the free entry and exit of the foreign killer herdsmen attacking communities across the country.
The group blamed the federal government for its failure to ensure â€Žadequate security at the borders so as to check the activities of the foreign herdsmen ravaging the country. â€Ž
Addressing a press conference in Kaduna, the Assistant National Secretary General of MACBAN, â€ŽIbrahim Abdullahi noted that Nigeria’s borders are porous as people come in anytime and go out anytime they want.
“In fact, it is a shameful thing today that we don’t even know those that are indigenous fulanis or the transhuman fulanis.
“That is why people mixed things up, you begin to suspect the fulani man that you grew up with when anything happens. He has not travelled, far where did he get the AK 47” he said.
â€ŽThe solution to the influx of foreign herdsmen, according to Abdullahi, is for the Nigeria to that either opt out of the ECOWAS protocol which allowed free movement among member countries or introduce some conditions to coming into the country in view of the current challenges.
“We should ensure that anybody coming into the country, we know when he is coming, where he is going and control what they are coming with.
Abdullahi said further that “another problem people don’t know is that, these migratory fulanis that come into the country, come with all forms of weapons, many at times they come in with less than 50 cattle, but when going back they go with thousand cattle, rustled from our own fulanis here. So our economy is also affected.
“One other issue we need to know again is that, some of these countries that fulanis come from in Africa have crises, like Chad or central African Republic were there is rebellion.
“Weapons have become like pure water or bread, so people from there see it as normal to hang AK 47.
“So it is left for the government to do the right thing, let us decide who comes in because it is our country, let us decide the terms for the person coming, let us not because of ECOWAS protocol, leave everything to fate, that is not going to help us. The truth is that when you go to your village today you will see fulanis that have been there since, apart from the knife and the stick that they have and maybe Dane gun for hunting they don’t have AK 47. The truth is that these people coming from other countries we have to control them.”
He disclosed that four of fulanis were recently killed by Kadara and Gbagi communities in Kajuru local government areas of Kaduna State following allegations of kidnapping.
According to him, a kidnap incident took place in the area allegedly by fulani herdsmen, but instead of trying to get to the root of the matter, the communities descended on the nearest fulani community, a development he said was not good enough.
He lamented that the activities of the foreign herdsmen had negatively affected the indigenous fulanis as they are always at the receiving end at the slightest incident.
He insisted that there is need for people to understand the different types of fulanis, saying, “fulanis are categorised into three – the settled fulanis, the semi settled fulanis and the transhuman fulanis.