Governor Abubakar Sani Bello of Niger State has disclosed plans to compensate herdsmen who lost livestock to cattle rustlers in the state.
The governor stated this at the festival organized by the Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore Fulani Socio-Cultural Association of Nigeria at the Aliyu Ndayoko Memorial Stadium, Bida, Bida Local Government Area of the state.
Gov. Bello represented by Secretary to the State Government, Ahmed Ibrahim Matane, revealed that six pastoralists who were victims of cattle rustling will be identified and compensated.
He explained that the six beneficiaries, two from each of the three senatorial zones, would be given 10 cattle each as compensation from the government.
According to him: “The gesture [shows] the willingness of government in providing initiatives aimed at fostering peace as well as nurture harmonious relationship among the citizenry.”
The governor also revealed that his administration has reactivated the Bobi Grazing Reserve and other reserves in the state to reduce conflicts between farmers and herders.
He noted: “The reserves, apart from being a pragmatic and sustainable solution to farmers-herders clashes, will also generate employment opportunities.”
Bello further expressed optimism that the festival would bring harmony and foster cordial relationships among people of different backgrounds.
The Etsu Nupe and Chairman, Niger State Council of Traditional Rulers, Alhaji Yahaya Abubakar in his remarks underscored the need for peaceful coexistence between herders and farmers while calling on them to always be law-abiding citizens.
The royal father said: “The importance of peaceful coexistence among the citizenry to the development of the society could not be over-emphasized.”
Also, the National President of Miyetti Allah, Alh. Bello Bodejo who spoke through Alh. Gidado Idris called for peaceful coexistence between farmers and herders in the state, saying: “Unity of purpose would help to achieve the much-desired economic prosperity.”
The Director General, Nomadic Affairs and Conflict Resolution in the state, Ardo Abdullahi Adamu Babayo, in his speech said the Fulani cultural festival would be a turning point in the inter-ethnic relationship not only in Bida Emirate but the state at large.