From Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye and Fred Ezeh, Abuja
The National Economic Council (NEC), yesterday, resolved that states should pay compensation to victims of herders/farmers clashes whose properties were destroyed in their various jurisdictions.
The meeting held at the Conference Centre of the Presidential Villa, Abuja, was the first meeting of the NEC that would have members attend physically since late March 2020, when President Muhammadu Buhari announced the COVID-19 lockdown in Nigeria.
The decision to pay compensation was part of the communique read by the Ogun Governor, Dapo Abiodun, when he briefed State House Correspondents alongside his Kebbi State counterpart, Atiku Bagudu.
Abiodun said those who suffered loses in targeted attacks must be made to have a sense of compensation.
He said members of the council re-committed to the protection of all residents without discrimination, adding that governors would also ensure that criminals are arrested and prosecuted.
He also the Council further resolved that there must be public condemnation of hatred against minority groups, as it advised that members of non-indigenous groups should be incorporated into local security groups.
Abiodun said the council also deliberated on ways to better manage forests, to deter criminals from inhabiting them for nefarious activities. The council also encouraged states to promote the modernisation of livestock farming.
Atiku said council supported the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) plans to convert existing voting points and settlements into polling units to enhance voter access during elections.
INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, who briefed the council earlier, reiterated the need to expand voters’ access to polling units, noting that there were only 120,000 polling units to serve a projected population of over 50 million voters.
‘We’ll hold Akeredolu accountable for genocide against pastoralists’
Fulani socio-cultural association, Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore, has accused Ondo State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, of being responsible for the ongoing “genocide” against innocent pastoralists and northerners living in the South West.
The group alleged that Akeredolu created ethnic militia group (Amotekun) to unleash terror and mayhem on innocent herders and northerners living in the South West, including the ‘unconstitutional and blanket eviction notices for herders to vacate places where they make their livelihoods’.
National Secretary of the Association, Saleh Alhasan, in a statement released in Abuja, yesterday, called for calm among the people, assuring that efforts were on to proffer permanent solution to the challenges.
He called on states government to quit enacting laws that widen cracks in the unity of Nigeria and urged them to promote steps that would further strengthen the fragile peace and unity in the country.
He, however, lauded Bauchi State Governor, Bala Mohammed, for constantly speaking for the Fulani pastoralists who, he alleged, are being persecuted across many states through enactment of negative obnoxious laws against their means of livelihoods against the constitutional provisions.
He said: “Bauchi governor has gradually emerged as the only lone voice in the North to openly defend the Fulani pastoralists. This was because he believed in the unity and peaceful co-existence of Nigeria as one indivisible entity where every citizen has equal right and privileges. Those attempting to silence him are only undertaking an exercise in futility, as the majority of the northern masses, particularly, the pastoralists who have seen a leader and saviour at this critical times, are solidly behind him.”