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Herdsmen/farmers agree to lay down arms in Manbilla

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To bring the herders/farmer crisis ravaging the Mambilla Plateau in Sardauna Council of Taraba State to an end, both parties have collectively agreed to lay down their arms and embrace peace.The agreement, The Guardian learnt, was arrived at yesterday at a town hall meeting chaired by the state deputy governor, Haruna Manu, in the council.

The meeting brought together stakeholders from the area, including the Speaker of the House of Assembly, Abel Peter Diah, former Nigeria ambassador to Cameroun, Emmanuel Q. Njiwah, herders and farmers representatives, among others

The recent upheaval in the area led to wanton destruction of lives and property, but have also compelled the area which use to be a tourist attraction to be abandoned following the prevailing security’ situation.Addressing the parties, the deputy governor, who expressed sadness over the incessant killings and destruction of properties in the Mambilla Plateau, said the state government would stop at nothing to secure peace among all tribes in the area.

Stressing that the meeting was aimed at bringing to end hostilities among major actors in the area, he said, would tread all the legitimate paths to bring to book anyone caught with arms, assuring that all displaced persons would soon return to their ancestral lands without any harassment.

Diah, who also expressed dismay over lingering killings among the Fulani and Mambilla ethnic groups took the people down the memory lane on how their forefathers have lived together peacefully for generations.

Demanding an immediate end to the killings, he said the leadership of the House and entire members would give all the needed helping hands to the executive arm of the government to restore the eluded peace to Mambilla.

While commending Governor Darius Dickson Ishaku for the peace initiative, representatives of the various tribes in the Mambilla Plateau, hope the steps taken by the government would go a long way in healing the wounds of people.

Sali Waziri, who spoke on behalf of the Fulani community, said with the intervention of the government, the issue of reconciliation between the Fulani and Mambilla can only work if perpetrators of the alleged genocide against his people would be punished according to the laws of the land.

He enjoined the people to live together as brothers, with respect for one another, adding: “I will not leave this meeting without passing the message of my people across, which I have said.”Corroborating Waziri, Njiwah stressed the need for the people to put aside their differences by living together as brothers, stressing that the area can only develop if all eschew violence by embracing peace.

He pleaded with all the tribes in the area to as a matter of urgency draw the attention of security operatives to issues that could jeopardise government’s peace efforts in the area.


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