Alternative to Fulani Herdsmen Menace in Southeast – by Chief Guy Ikokwu
The issue of Fulani Herdsmen raising their cows in the age-long traditional manner of grazing along road and farmlands from the North to the South, East and West have, in recent years, raised a lot of concern. This concern is the result of the dwindling vegetation in the North, the ravaging of communal farms and their resort to the use of sophisticated military weapons to assert their so-called rights for their cattle to graze anywhere they chose, with the collateral damage of loss of lives, not only among the communities, but also of leaders of the communities and administrative officials. With the current insecurity of Boko Haram in Northeast of Nigeria, it has become very worrisome that such insecurity would spread to a majority of the states in the country.
Recently, various organizations, community leaders, traditional rulers, the clergy and legislators have appealed to the government of the Southeast to take some very drastic measures to curtail the incessant activities of the herdsmen which have led to loss of precious lives and destruction of cash crops in communal farmlands. Banning the activities of herdsmen alone is not a veritable alternative, especially in these days of economic recession and diversification.