…Fulani herders are worse under President Buhari
Miyetti Allah, the umbrella body for herders in the country, has said that Fulani herders are worse off under President Muhammadu Buhari.
“Buhari has not done anything for us other than creating enemies for us. Herders are being chased around.
“Let us look at the larger picture and not allow enemies to penetrate us. If Buhari loves the herders, he would have created the grazing reserves for them,” the National Secretary of Miyetti Allah, Alhaji Saleh Alhassan, said.
According to him, herdsmen are being marginalised in the country under the leadership of Buhari.
“It is best if we are on our own where we would be protected.”
Ondo State Government had last week given a seven-day ultimatum to herdsmen to vacate its forests, accusing them of perpetrating killing of farmers, rapes and banditry in the state.
Speaking on Sunday, Alhassan said it was wrong to link herders to President Buhari, claiming herders have become more marginalised under his administration.
On the link of the group with crime and criminalities, he said: “We don’t support crime. So, I’m not saying there are no Fulani that is criminals, there are, like other tribes, but don’t destroy their profession.
“It is not good for the country. If everything busts, it is to the advantage of the herders because we are not even enjoying the federation.
“We are even bidding for the restructuring of the country; let every part go, so we can say this is where we are.
“As it is now, there is no form of marginalisation we are not seeing in this country. Everywhere we are being marginalised.
“You think we will accept Nigeria where we don’t have access to land to feed our animals and you think there will be peace?”
On whether restructuring would solve the herders/farmers crisis, Alhassan said: “If we restructure the country and the South-West region says they won’t accept cattle unless they are brought to the market or supermarket, it’s okay by us.
“Quite fundamentally. If we leave today now and if there is no oil revenue, won’t they pay attention to animal rearing?
“The mistake people make is that they think when they put pressure on herders they are getting at President (Muhammadu) Buhari. Buhari has no relationship with the herders. That is the truth.
“When people say he is our grandpatron, was Jonathan from the South-South, not our grandpatron?
“If the President is a Fulani, it doesn’t in any way affect the life of a herder. In fact, they are worse off under Buhari. What are they benefitting?
“They don’t access any government facility or social amenity, yet they are responsible for the bulk of animal protein we produce in this country. I think it is deliberate for people to think otherwise,” Alhassan stressed.