Adamawa Traditional Ruler Closes Markets Along Nigeria, Cameroon Border to Curb COVID-19 Spread

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By Daji Sani

The Gangwari of Ganye Chiefdom in Adamawa State, Alhaji Umaru Sanda, has ordered closure of all markets and movement at the borders areas between Nigeria and Cameroon to curb the spread of COVID-19 pandemic into the country through his chiefdom .

His Royal Highness disclosed this at his palace in Ganye on Sunday to journalists to mark his 20th anniversary on the throne.

He said following the rising statistics of COVID-19 pandemic in Cameroon, he had ordered the total closure of all markets, especially the ones at the borders and the popular International Cattle markets in Ganye which usually attracts many people from neighboring countries and states.

His chiefdom comprises three Local Government Areas namely Ganye, Jada and Toungo located at the southern part of the state. It is bounded by the Republic of Cameroon in the South -east,Taraba state in the West, Fofure LGA and Mayo Belwa LGA in the East and North respectively.

Sanda who is a first class chief and chairman of the Ganye traditional council with 18 districts under his watch said he had directed all his district heads ,and village heads to ensure total compliance with government circular that all border markets should be shutdown.

He said he was collaborating with the security agencies, health personal, vigilante and hunters to block all the borders between Nigeria and Cameroon including Taraba state.

“l was told that some of these defaulters usually trek through footpaths into Ganye. l have deployed vigilante and hunters in these areas to stop them from coming into my chiefdom.”

“This pandemic of COVID-19 is not a joke, therefore all hands must be on deck to prevent the spread of the disease. I have been sensitizing our people round the chiefdom using their native dialect to make them understand the gravity of the pandemic and the total compliance with government directives as preventive measures in curtailing the spread,” he said

On insecurity bedeviling the nation, the Gangwari said the society had derailed from its norms, values and morality and had embraced the get-rich-quick syndrome by any means.

He said because of the high rate of kidnapping farmers, don’t go to the farm for fear of being kidnapped, adding that kidnapping is alien to Ganye people but it is common now and has driven many from investing in the area.

“Imaging myself who is a large scale farmer and a first class chief if l want to go to my farm, l go under tight security because l don’t know what will happen, making it difficult for our people to access their farms,” he said.

The royal father said these hoodlums are taking advantage of the mountainous terrain in his chiefdom to perpetrate their heinous crimes adding that currently they used threats to collect huge sums of money from people and if they refused to give them the money, they will be kidnapped.

He said the only way out was for the society to return to where it used to be, adding that government and stakeholders needed to collaborate on how to create employment for the youths and lay emphasis on morality and good home upbringing.

Sanda said Ganye chiefdom was endowed with good lands anda a fevourable climatic condition for Cocoa, kalanut Irish potatoes, yam, maize, rice, Guinea corn, palm trees and cattle.

He said there were a lot of mineral resources like gold, diamond and some precious stones that could diversify the country’s economy from petroleum resources.

Sanda said he was battling with illegal miners and called on Federal Government to come to Ganye chiefdom and invest instead of allowing illegal miners to invade the area.