By Yemi Adedeji, Abuja
The Miyetti-Allah Kautal Hore Fulani has decried the ‘mass eviction’ and ‘criminal displacement’ of herdsmen in Benue State over the anti-grazing law, calling on the federal government for urgent intervention.
The Association lamented that the Benue anti-grazing law is a clear persecution of the Fulanis by Governor Samuel Ortom .
It stated that the Benue controversy has led to displacement and suffering of innocent people who have become refugees in their country, hence the need for urgent and drastic intervention by the government.
Abdullahi Bello Bodejo, National President of the association, in Abuja said the Benue anti-open grazing law which became effective on 1 November is an aberration which is against the provisions of the Nigeria Constitution that guarantees the rights of every Nigerians to live in any place or states of their choice.
Bodejo noted that reports from those displaced show they were on move for three or more days without food and shelter.
According to him, “the Benue crisis is mass eviction and criminal displacement of Nigerians who have been put under undue pressure especially the children and the elderly among those displaced and migrating to neighbouring states and other places.
He added that, “We have the Benue State Government displacing innocent Fulanis and other pastoralists and Taraba State wanted to follow suit. What have Fulanis done to warrant this persecution? Does it mean that the Federal Government and President Muhammadu Buhari are not aware of this development or are they afraid of living up to their constitutional responsibilities?
“It is worrisome that thousands of cattle are being moved in an undignified manners that endanger the lives of families and their only means of economic livelihood. The question is where is the Benue Government want this displaced Nigerians to go to?” he said.
“The Fulanis are law abiding and we as Fulani leaders are trying our best to calm our people. However there is a limit to how long we calm the people before they got tired and protest their persecution,” Bodejo said.
The president emphasised that the case instituted by the association in the Federal High Court Abuja was an indication that the Fulanis are peaceful and law abiding, while also calling on the federal government to establish the National Grazing Reserve Commission as part of measures to bring lasting resolutions to the crisis.
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