The Osun State Government has called on the Federal Government to declare a state of emergency on the ongoing Fulani herdsmen menace in order to checkmate the killings.
Commissioner for Special Duties and Chairman of the Committee on Peaceful Co-existence between Fulani/Bororo and Crop Farmers in the state, Hon. Mudasiru made the call in Osogbo, the state capital, on Tuesday.
He accused some powerful people in the country and Osun state as well of providing fire arms for some herdsmen which they use in the killings.
He also urged government to ensure ranching to enable herdsmen feed their cows conveniently without invading farmers’ farms.
“The places where the cows used to graze have developed and people have built mansions there, whereas, the animals have multiplied and must feed. The Federal Government should finance the state governments to have ranches so as to discourage open grazing, he said.”
He added that with the efforts of the Committee on Peaceful Co-existence in the state, there had been no record of any death resulting from Fulani herdsmen and farmers clash.
He added that the committee had been using traditional ways to resolve issues between herdsmen and farmers in the state to avoid any clash.
According to him, “Even if any case was taken to the police and got to the court, it would still be returned to the committee to be resolved amicably in traditional ways.
The commissioner said that one of the traditional ways of maintaining peace with the herdsmen, was the provision of 13 boreholes for them in various Fulani settlements between 2015 and 16.
“Governor Rauf Aregbesola set up the committee in 2014 even before the herdsmen and farmers clashes became major issues in the country. The Committee visited the Fulani settlements across the state and they told us that they need water and education.
“When they realised that the government cares for them and that we are very sincere, they are ready to cooperate with us on any issue we present to them. We succeeded in resolving 6,000 cases from 2014 till date. That is the secret of the peace between us and them.
Mudasiru assured that with the traditional approach in relating with the herdsmen and the relative cooperation the state is getting from them, there would be no herdsmen attack in the state.
In order to ensure orderliness in the herding activities in the state to avoid any clash with farmers, the commissioner said the committee had taken an inventory of the cows in the state.
“There is estimated three million cows in the state. The state government is making efforts to conduct proper enumeration of all the animals in the state and that the process will start with cows. This is to ensure orderliness in the grazing activities to avoid any clash with farmers,” he said.
“The governor has mandated that we must do enumeration of all the animals in this state and we are starting from cows. Every cattle will carry a tag and identity number that will be allocated to it.”
“The detail of every cattle in this state will be on a central data base of the state which will also contain the full details of the owner of the cattle. This will prevent theft of the cows and enable us to identify invaders.”