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Tinubu Wants Governors, Security Experts, Others To Meet On Farmers, Herders Crisis

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Tinubu Commiserates With Sultan over Brother’s Death

The National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has called for a meeting of governors, security experts, traditional rulers and others as a means of ending the farmers and herders’ crisis.
The former Lagos State governor made the suggestion in a statement he issued today on the crisis . Tinubu lamented that the crisis has caused so much havoc to the businesses of both the farmers and herders. Below is the statement where Tinubu profers solutions to the crisis:

“The herder-farmer dispute has taken on acute and violent dimensions. It has cost too many innocent lives while destroying the property and livelihoods of many others. It has also aggravated ethnic sentiment and political tension. Despite the efforts of some of those in positions of high responsibility and public trust, the crisis has not significantly abated. Sadly, others who should know better have incited matters by tossing about hate-tainted statements that fall dangerously short of the leadership these people claim to provide. We all must get hold of our better selves to treat this matter with the sobriety it requires.

“Because of the violence that has ensued and the fretful consequences of such violence if left unabated, we must move in unison but decisively to end the spiral of death and destruction. Only when the violence and the illogic of it are halted can logic and reason prevail. Until the violence is rolled back, we cannot resolve the deep problems that underlie this conflict. We will neither be able to uplift the farmer from his impoverished toil nor move the herder toward the historic transformation which he must make.

“Yet, as vital as security is to the resolution of this matter, we must realize security measures alone will not suffice. Enhanced security may be the necessary first step, but it cannot be the only step. Nor do we resolve this by hitching ourselves to emotional, one-dimensional answers. More to the point, those who cast this as exclusively a matter of ethnic confrontation are mistaken. This is no time for reckless chauvinism of any kind, on either side of this dispute. This matter is not ethnic in factual origin or actual causation although in the minds and hearts of too many it has become ethnic in recrimination and impulsive action.

“There have been sporadic disputes in the past but this one is more severe. The reasons for the greater violence of this current dispute are myriad. Economic hardship and its resultant dislocation, proliferation of weapons, generalized increase in criminality, and weakening of social institutions all play a role. Desertification, increased severity and length of the dry season, diminution of water resources, impairment of land fertility and population growth also contribute in no small measure. Thus, any durable solution must get at most, if not all, of these issues.

“Farmers have a right to farm their land unmolested. Herders have a right to raise their livestock without undue interference. However, when conflict between these groups arises to such an extent, we must set forth clear principles and policies to remove the tension, in order to allow both to proceed toward their stated goals and to live in harmony and according to their respective rights. Just as I cannot go into your house and take your shirt because I do not have one of like colour, no one can destroy the crops of a farmer or seize the cattle of a herder simply because such destruction sates their anger or their selfish, short-term interests. If such a condition were to hold, then all would turn into chaos; all would be in jeopardy of being lost. To destroy the crops or seize the property of the innocent farmer or herder is nothing if not an act of criminality.

“Here, I must state two fundamental realities. One has been previously mentioned by me and others as part of the solution. The other reality is hardly discussed.

READ ALSO: Ex-service Chiefs In Missing Arms Funds Scandal

“First, the situation of the herder is becoming untenable. Their nomadic ways fall increasingly in conflict with the dictates of modern society. This way of life is centuries old and steeped in tradition. We can never condone or accept violence as a valid response to any hardship. However, we all must recognize and understand the sense of dislocation caused by the sudden passing of such a longstanding social institution.

“I mention their dislocation not to excuse violence and other excesses. I raise it to underscore that we must realize the true complexity of this crisis. What is happening has been terrible, but it is not due to any intrinsic evil in either the herder or the farmer. The calamity now being faced is borne of situational exigencies. It is but the tragic outcome when often desperate, alienated people are left too long unattended and when their understanding of the modern socio-economic and environmental forces affecting the very terms of their existence is incomplete. An ethnically fuelled response will be to vociferously defend the nomadic way believing this tack will somehow protect the herder and cast the speaker as an ethnic champion. However, careless words cannot shield the herder from relentless reality.

Such talk will only delude him into believing that he can somehow escape the inevitable. We do both herder and farmer grave injustice by allowing the herder to continue as he is – fighting a losing battle against modernity and climate change. In that fight, desperation causes him to flail and fight the farmer, who too is a victim of these impersonal forces.

“Second, to help the herder and leave the farmer unattended is unfair and will only trigger a resentment that tracks already heated ethnic fault lines. The times have also been perilous for the hardscrabble farmer. He needs help to survive and to be more productive in ways that increases national food security. Farm productivity and incomes must be enhanced. Soil enrichment, better irrigation and water retention as well as provision of better rural roads, equipment and access to modern machinery are required to lift him above bare subsistence.

“Both innocent and law-abiding farmer and herder need to be recompensed for the losses they have suffered. Both need further assistance to break the current cycle of violence and poverty. In short, the continued progressive reform of many of our rural socio-economic relationships is called for.

“Based on these strategic observations, I recommend the federal government convene a meeting of state governors, senior security officials, herder and farmer representatives, along with traditional rulers and religious leaders. The purpose of this meeting would be to hammer out a set of working principles to resolve the crisis.

“After this meeting, governors of each state should convene follow-up meetings in their states to refine and add flesh to the universal principles by adjusting them to the particular circumstances of their states. In addition to religious and traditional leaders and local farmer and herder representatives, these meetings shall include the state’s best security minds along with experts in agriculture (livestock and farming), land use and water management to draw specific plans for their states.

“To accomplish this goal, wise policy must include the following elements:
Maintain reasonable and effective law enforcement presence in affected areas. The proposed reform of the Nigerian law enforcement apparatus towards state and community policing can help in this regard. The legislative and administrative measures required to make this a reality should be expedited. In addition to alleviating the present farmer-herder crisis, this reform will also bolster efforts against the banditry, kidnapping and robbery plaguing communities across the country. Governments need to employ new technology and equipment to enhance the information gathering/surveillance and response capabilities of law enforcement.

Help the herders’ transition to more sedentary but more profitable methods of cattle-rearing. Unoccupied public land can be fenced into grazing areas or ranches and leased to herders on a very low-cost, nominal basis. The leasing is not intended to penalize herders. Rather, the nominal fee is intended to ensure the herders are invested in the project and incentivized (by reason of their investment) to use the land provided. This aspect will also mitigate any resentment over herders being given land for free. Government, in turn, being a responsible lessor, must help with supplemental feed and water in these areas. This will enable herders to better maintain and care for their livestock thus enhancing their incomes. Herders can augment income by becoming suppliers to the leather goods industry. Additionally, herders can also develop a more symbiotic relationship with farmers by, for example, trading animal compost to the farmer in exchange for animal feed.

Assist farmers increase productivity by supporting or providing subvention for their acquisition of fertilizer, equipment and machinery and, also, by establishing commodity boards to guarantee minimum prices for important crops. In the medium to long term, resources must be dedicated to establishing better irrigation and water catchment systems to further improve farm productivity and mitigate the dire impact of flood and drought cycles brought about by extreme climatic conditions.

Establish a permanent panel in each state as a forum for farmers, herders, security officials and senior state officials to discuss their concerns, mitigate contention and identify trouble and douse it before it erupts.

“We are a populous nation of diverse ethnic groups. We are a people of potential richness, yet to escape present poverty. We have resources but not wealth. Often, our words speak of hope and fear in the same breath. While we all hope and strive for the best, many fear that there is not enough of what is needed to go around and that they will be left out. In such a situation, harsh competition and contest are fated to occur. In the unfolding of this social dynamic, one group of actors has been pitted against another over dwindling water and fertile ground. The confrontation has resulted in the needless loss of life and destruction of property. If left to itself, this situation may spread and threaten the progress of the nation. It could call into proximate question the utility of the social compact that holds government and governed in positive bond, one to the other. We have a decision to make. Do we attempt the hard things that decency requires of us to right the situation? Or do we allow ourselves to be slave to short term motives that appeal to base instinct that run afoul of the democratic principles upon which this republic is founded and for which so many have already sacrificed so much? In the question itself, lies the answer.”

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We Did Our Best To Save Mailafia – Hospital

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We Did Our Best To Save Mailafia - Hospital

Worried about the allegation of complicity, the University of Abuja Teaching Hospital (UATH) has said that it did its best to save the life of former Deputy Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Dr Obadiah Mailafia.

The hospital said those accusing it of having a hand in the death of the foremost activist were not sincere.

The acting Public Relations Officer of UATH, Michael Atiga, speaking on Mallafia’s death and allegations that trailed it, wondered how the hospital could be blamed for being responsible when its medical personnel did everything necessary to revive him.

According to him, the exceptional performances of medical personnel in Mailafia’s case earned them verbal accolade from the wife of the deceased, who he noted, was around the husband.

He explained:”The patient came in on Saturday, September 18,2021, around 2pm to 3pm in the afternoon. He was well received because the doctors even had pre-information that he was coming, so he was well received.

“And considering the nature of his illness because from what I gathered from the doctor, as he was rushed to this place, his oxygen saturation was like 60 percent, so there was a problem already. He was in a bad condition so they had to commence treatment immediately.”

According to him, the doctors ”placed him on a free-flow oxygen in order to increase his oxygen saturation and they started this medication immediately without asking for any money.

“The saturation which was 60 percent at the time they came to this place, at a point, went to like 90 percent. So they continued the treatment till like 10 clock at night.

“Since they discovered that his condition demanded utmost care, they called a nurse who was even off duty to be stationed with the patient throughout the night. The nurse was off duty but they called him to come and stay with the patient.

READ ALSO: ‘How Doctors Shabbily Treated Mailafia While Dying’

“So, the doctors did all they could to salvage the situation but you know that in health, doctors can only treat, it’s God that saves lives.”

” Even the wife, in the morning of that day around 8, o’clock when they passed the news of the husband’s death to her, appreciated the doctors that this is the first time she was seeing very dedicated health workers, whose priority is to save lives,” he added.

Asked if he had the appreciation from the deceased wife on record, he said, “I don’t have it on record but this was what I gathered from the doctor on duty.”

While admitting that a foreign doctor who was contacted abroad following the development, reached out to the hospital’s doctors handling Mailafia’s case, he said,” As at the time the foreign doctor was calling, the man had passed.”

“The foreign doctor was calling from abroad through the son of the deceased instructing the doctor who had certified the man dead to go and start pressing the chest again, who now told him that “Oga, I have been into this practice for over 20 years, the man is dead, if I like, I can press his chest from now till tomorrow, that would not bring him back to life. That was what happened,” he explained.

When told there was an allegation that the hospital asked for N600,000 before administering certain medication, he responded, “No, no, no.”

“That is why I’m telling you a clear record of what transpired in this hospital. If you like, you can meet with the wife of the deceased to hear her side. Nobody asked for money,” he explained.

When equally told that the Middle Belt Forum quoted the wife as saying this, Atiga said:”That means the woman is not sincere, she is not sincere, because when he was certified death and the doctors passed his condolences to her, she appreciated them according to what I learnt.”

He explained further:”The man was admitted into the VIP wing of the infectious disease centre which attracted more attention. Nobody said they should deposit before they commence treatment.

“It was after his death, and they said no problem, that the CBN was going to foot the bill. So, we are suprised that all these things started coming up.

READ ALSO: Obadiah Mailafia: The Grip Of Grief

“Before his death, he was even talking to them. At a point when they were trying to improve the oxygen saturation, according to what I gathered, all their efforts connecting the cylinder was going down. They tried all they could but it was going down and that was when the man passed away.

“The doctors said at the point he was requesting for ventilator, if they do that, it would even fast- track his death, they are practitioners.

“That was what happened because I went there and interviewed the doctor as a public relations officer and he briefed me on all that happened.”

 

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Anti-open Grazing Laws In Southern States Unrealistic – El-Rufai

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Anti-open Grazing Laws In Southern States Unrealistic - El-Rufai

Kaduna State Governor Nasir El-Rufai on Tuesday described the anti-grazing laws being signed by some of his colleagues as unrealistic.

According to him, while ranching is the ideal solution to the problem, it cannot be done overnight.

El-Rufai also said Kaduna State would require at least N114 billion to put together 14 ranches to fully settle herders and their families.

The governor said this while speaking to newsmen during a visit to the National Secretariat of the All progressives Congress, in Abuja.
He said : “The northern state governors’ forum has already taken a position that open grazing is not a sustainable way of livestock production. And we must move towards ranching.

READ ALSO: Delta Lawmakers Pass Anti-open Grazing Bill

“But moving towards ranching cannot be done overnight. We have to have a plan; we have to have resources and we have to implement it sensibly. It is not a matter of populist legislation or saying tomorrow this or that. It is not a solution. We have taken a position as northern state governors and we are implementing that.

“And in my state, for instance, we are developing a huge ranch to centralize the herders. And that is the solution, a long time. But can it be done overnight? No.”

“This project we are doing will cost us about 10 billion naira. The CBN is supporting us with about 7.5 billion. And it will take about two years to do.

“We will be settling Fulani herd families. And I hope that they will see that there are alternative ways of producing livestock instead of running up and down with cattle going to people’s farms to cause all kinds of problems. We want to solve the problem.

“It is unhelpful to politicize the situation and pass legislation that you know that you cannot implement. So, we have taken a position and we are working round the clock to implement that position.

“These herders emanate from the north and we are going to centralize them. We cannot do it overnight. We need billions of naira. This is just one ranch that is causing 10 billion. I have 14 grazing reserves in Kaduna state and I would like to convince them into ranching. Do I have 14 times 10 billion naira? I don’t have.

READ ALSO: Govt Wants Supreme Court To Dismiss Rivers’ Bid To Stop Ceding Of 17 Oil Wells To Imo

“If the federal government will give me a hundred and fourteen billion, I will convert the other thirteen into ranches and make sure that nobody comes out with a cow or sheep in Kaduna state because I will have enough ranches to take care of everybody. That is the solution. You can legislate but let us wait and see. And I wish them the best of luck.”

 

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Sunny Ade’s Wife Dies

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Sunny Ade's Wife Dies

Risikat Ajoke Adegeye, a wife of Juju maestro, King Sunny Ade, is dead. She was a former member of the Lagos State House of Assembly.

A media aide to the son of the deceased , Daniel Fayemi, and sources in the Lagos State House of Assembly confirmed Adegeye’s demise.

Fayemi said : “The philanthropic politician passed on in the early hours of Tuesday. Her remains have since been deposited at the TOS funeral homes, Lagos.

“She is survived by her grieving husband and son, Mr. George Folarin. Funeral arrangements would be communicated accordingly.”

Her son, Folarin, also confirmed the death on behalf of the family in a statement on Tuesday.

READ ALSO: Govt Absent From Court As Nnamdi Kanu Seeks Return To Britain

He said the ex-lawmaker died after a brief illness.

The statement read in part: “We wish to formally inform friends, well-wishers, political associates, and the general public that Hon Risikat Ajoke Adegeye passed on after a brief illness during the early hours of Tuesday, 21st September 2021.

“Hon Risikat Ajoke Adegeye was a Honourable Member in the 6th Assembly of the Lagos State House of Assembly.

“She will be greatly missed not only by her immediate family but also by her political associates and followers. Further information in respect to her burial ceremony will be announced later after extensive consultations with the family.

“Thank you as we pray that she continues to rest peacefully and eternally with the Almighty God.”

 

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