Why Ebonyi governor cautioned herdsme
nEbonyi State Governor, David Umahi, has urged the Hausa/Fulani Community in Ebonyi State, especially the herdsmen, to stop trespassing on people’s farm land, saying that the tension in the state and even outside the state is so high that everybody should avoid anything capable of igniting crisis.
Umahi noted that some Hausa /Fulani people have lived in the state for more than six decades without coming into conflict with people of the state.
He stated that those who cause problems were the herdsmen who move their cattle from farmlands to farmlands, destroying crops and fields.
According to him, "The last time we met, we were told that our Fulani /Hausa brothers who have lived here for about 50 to 60 years do not pose any problem or threat to us. People that pose problem and threat to us are those who pass through the land. And now, I will be handling the two together. The first one is to say to you, they should not pass again because the tension is very very high," Umahi said.
Chief Umahi spoke Friday during a meeting with security agencies and leaders of the Hausa /Fulani community in the state held at the Ebonyi Police Command, Abakaliki.
He said that as Chief Security Officer of the state, it was his duty to protect the lives of everybody in the state including the herdsmen, noting that in difficult times as we have today, calls for interaction and understanding.
He said, "I
am deeply concerned about life of every Nigerian both those living in Ebonyi State and outside the state. It is our duty to protect the lives of every Nigerian and those who are not Nigerians. And when you have tension building up, you must as a chief security officers have an interactive section and see how we can calm the situation down."
Governor Umahi urged leaders of the Hausa /Fulani community in the state to appeal to their people to understand the building tensions across the state and country in general and remain calm and stop trespassing on people’s farms.
"For now, you have to tell them to stay out of passing. We also have political enemies, those that don't wish us well. Now that tension is high, they can go and do one thing and it will now be the problem of Ebonyi State government. So I did not want that to happen," he said.
He said that efforts were on to make laws in the state to stop even goats and chickens from destroying farmlands.
"Minus destruction of farm land, the lives of the Fulanis and the lives of my people are also important to me and we are one people. I personally do not like blood. Even killing of animal in a very wicked form is also not good. Every state must put in place what will guarantee peace for whoever in the land both indigenes and non indigenes," he said.