Kebbi governor links clashes to climate change
Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on Rice and Wheat Production in Nigeria, Abubakar Atiku Bagudu, has traced the root cause of the clashes between farmers and herdsmen in the country to the adverse effects of climate change.
According to Baagudu, who is also the governor of Kebbi State, the skirmishes were neither religious nor tribal in nature.He spoke over the weekend during the 2018 National Students and Youth Agro-Based Entrepreneurship and Empowerment Programme of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) at the Waziri Umar Federal Polytechnic in Birnin Kebbi.
The governor noted that water resources were fast becoming scarce, thus creating difficulty for fishermen. Also, he said inadequate land was proving problematic for crop cultivation, adding that the few grasses were equally a headache for rearers to graze their animals.
Bagudu told the representatives of the 237 institutions nationwide present at the event that most suspects, remanded in various prisons in Kebbi, Sokoto and Zamfara states were Fulani who had problems with farmers, stressing that the crisis was not peculiar to a region.
He challenged the students on amicable resolution of the crisis.His words: “All these challenges are there and they would get worse. Today, if you go to any prison in Kebbi, Sokoto or Zamfara, you will predominantly find young Fulani people that are there for one farmer-herdsman clash or the other. So, it is not a religious or tribal issue. It is a climate change issue and I want NANS to take up the challenge to help Nigeria and define her future.
“ If you start collating data across the 774 local government areas in Nigeria, I am sure every council area would report a case of land crisis or the other. If we do that, we would be able to understand the situation and provide better solutions.
“ Let me describe agriculture as the largest contributor to national growth and economy which must be embraced by all Nigerians, using modern science and technology tools.”
NANS Senate President, Comrade Bashir Gorau, inducted the governor as the Chief Farmer of Nigerian Students, handing him a certificate of recognition.However, majority of the students enjoined the Federal Government to make loans available for them to venture into farming in line with the policy thrust of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration to ensure food security.