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Insecurity: Our borders should be checked to prevent foreign incursion — S’West govs 

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Ekiti State Governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi(right); Governor of Osun State, Adegboyega Oyetola; Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Rotimi Akeredolu; Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde; Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun and some traditional rulers during the South West Governors Security Meeting at Governor’s Office, Ibadan … yesterday PHOTO: NAJEEM RAHEEM

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The Southwest governors, yesterday, stressed the need to tighten Nigerian borders to prevent foreign herdsmen from coming into the country without any form of caution, saying a number of them have come in with their herds and what they do is worrisome.

The Chairman of Southwest Governors’ Forum, Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State stated this at the security meeting held at the Oyo State Governor’s Office, Ibadan.

The meeting was hosted by Governor Seyi Makinde at the Executive Chamber of the Governor’s Office.

Top traditional rulers from the Southwest states were at the Oyo State Government Secretariat, Agodi, Ibadan.

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Traditional rulers present included the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi; Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi; Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Saliu Adetunji; Akarigbo of Remo, Oba Babatunde Ajayi and the Olugbo of Ugboland, Oba Fredrick Akinruntan.

The meeting also had in attendance members of the Oyo State Council of Obas.

The governors include, Gboyega Oyetola (Osun), Arakunrin Rotimi Akeredolu (Ondo), Kayode Fayemi (Ekiti) and Dapo Abiodun (Ogun).

The Chief of Staff to President Muhammadu Buhari, Ibrahim Gambari, the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Muhammed Adamu and the Director-General of State Service, Yussuf Mogaji Bichi were not physically present at the meeting.

It was gathered that the trio were unable to attend the meeting due to the bad weather that affected flight out of Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory.

Akeredolu said: “The discussion we had with our Obas and security chiefs have been most productive. Many things we never thought of came up and we heard from our Kabiyesis more mature approach to challenges we are facing in the South West and the country at large.

“And from our discussion, we all agreed that the time is now that we support the decision of National Economic Council (NEC) about forests management. They believe that all the states should be in the position to manage their forests, which will give enough room to determine who is there, what purpose they are serving, and where you have people illegally. The states should be able to take steps to enable us preserve our forests.

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“We all agreed that our borders have become too porous, and that we need to do something urgently to prevent foreign herdsmen from coming into this country without any form of caution, because a number of them have come in with their herds and what they do is of concern to us. We all believe that our borders need to be checked and tightened, so that all those foreigners from Niger Republic and those beyond bordering states don’t come in with their herds and destroy our farms.

“We also discussed that, as we are supporting other areas of farming, like rice farmers and others, there is need for government to support cattle breeding.

“One of the ways we can support cattle breeding is to change the ways cattle breeders are adopting now. So, there will be designated grazing areas, as well as feed mills. With these, there is no need to trek with herds from far. But, things that will lead to open grazing in these modern times must be looked at and the state and federal government, in particular, should give as much support as possible to cattle breeders.”

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