By Lateef Ibrahim, Abuja
Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar
Malami, SAN, has called for the stakeholder engagement in resolving the protracted farmer/herder conflict in the country.
Speaking during the AB Dikko memorial symposium held in on Saturday in Birnin-Kebbi, Kebbi state, Malami said farmer/herder crisis is real and therefore requires real-time and practically-oriented solutions.
According to him, “The better approach towards resolving the crisis over the short, medium and long terms is to directly involve the stakeholders in the coming up with solutions at the conception, implementation and monitoring faces”.
According to the Minister, community-oriented approach is likely to yield greater dividend “in diffusing and eventually eliminating the menace that has retarded economic development and created wide-spread insecurity”.
Malami noted that addressing farmer-herder crisis from purely theoretical perspectives often devoid of reality and without synchronization with the needs and aspirations of the involved stakeholders is not only counter-productive, but inimical to the emergence and sustenance of a peaceful and prosperous Nigeria.
The Minister, therefore advocated for setting-up of regulated grazing reserves to replace the “Burtali” or “Hurumi” pastoral system and intensive enlightenment to livestock breeders on the need for sedentary farming and transhumance agriculture as complimentary economic process to nomadic farming.
He said provision of water holes in remote grazing locations, subsidized veterinary care and mobile ambulatory services for surgeries and other medical interventions for livestock would be of great help.
While emphasizing the need for providing social amenities, educational facilities and cattle markets at central locations to accelerate nomadic settlements, Malami said educating communities on the need for peaceful co-existence and community engagement fora for bridge-building in community relations are of utmost importance.
According to the Minister, revamping of the activities of the Nomadic Education Commission with a view to complimenting the efforts of government is essential in resolving the farmer-herder clashes.