Most violent Fulani herdsmen are not Nigerians, says IGP
Mimiko tasks police on atrocities
PROFERRING lasting solution to the recurring menace of the Fulani herdsmen in the country, the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Mr. Solomon Arase, has appealed to Nigerians to treat them with the caution it deserves at the moment.
Arase said this in Akure at the weekend at a stakeholders meeting, where he affirmed that most violent herdsmen were not Nigerians but foreigners. He observed that they are migrants from neighbouring countries who gained entrance into the Nigeria with their herds, as foreign nomads, due to the porous borders.
The police boss stated that the troublesome herdsmen are either from Mali or Chad; the Nigerian herdsmen are law abiding. He urged the farmers to be careful and take caution in dealing with them.
Perturbed by the rising violence often perpetrated on Nigerians by Fulani cattle rearers, the Governor of Ondo State, Olusegun Mimiko has charged the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) to curtail the current security challenges posed by the activities of the herdsmen in the country.
Mimiko who expressed displeasure over the poor handling of the issue across the country by policemen urged the Inspector General of police to quickly intervene in the matter.
The governor spoke during a courtesy visit by the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Solomon Arase to the Governor’s Office.
The governor commended officers of the force for working hard towards apprehending the abductors of Chief Olu Falae and those who killed Late Prof. Albert Illemobade. Mimiko also assured the IGP of his support for men of the force.
Arase in his speech thanked the government of Ondo State for the support to the State Police command. He said the force would continue to provide adequate security for the people of the state as demonstrated in the recent arrest of Chief Olu Falae’s abductors. He added that the force is putting all security measures in place to checkmate the activities of the Fulani herdsmen in the country.
He noted that statistics at the Loius Edet House, Force Headquarters, Abuja glaringly showed that crime rate is at the lowest ebb in Ondo State.
The IGP disclosed that the police and state government are now working on how to build ranches and permanent grazing routes for the herdsmen.
According to him: “Most of these herdsmen are not Nigerians. They are people from Mali, Chad, who came into our system. So that is why we have to be very careful. Our borders are very porous. Predominantly our own herdsmen are law-abiding people.
“But when people come from outside with their cattle, we should not deny them entry because of ECOWAS protocols, good neighbourliness but at the same time we should not allow them to embark on criminal activities.”
“I have taken suggestions about how we can develop big ranches so that they can stop grazing on farmlands.”
The zonal tour from Kwara State to Ekiti State that ended in Ondo State, where he met too with stakeholders to address pressing issues pertaining to security, aside trashing the Fulani herdsmen menace, also highlighted the commitment of the force headquarters to the improvement of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF).
The IGP acknowledged the immeasurable impacts which the mutual cooperation of the public have borne on the performance of the force, enjoining them for more support to enable NPF improve on its service delivery.