Some governors on Monday who met with the national leadership of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association (MACBAN) in Akure, Ondo State capital, condemned criminal activities by bandits, kidnappers, rapists among others who hide in forests to unleash mayhem on innocent citizens.
The governors include Seyi Makinde of Oyo State; Gboyega Oyetola of Osun State; Muhammadu Badru Abubakar of Jigawa State; Abubakar Atiku Bagudu of Kebbi State; Oluwarotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State and the NGF Chairman who is also the governor of Ekiti State, Kayode Fayemi.
The governors also vowed to protect citizens of their state from the incessant attacks and promote good neighborliness through collaborative efforts.
Governor Makinde in his address said the meeting is not about politics but a meeting about a serious challenge they are being faced with.”
“We will not use criminality to solve criminality as nobody can predict what will end such. We will continue to work with our people to face the kidnappers, bandits, armed robbers who are our common enemies. We have to deal with the issue of fake news.”
He added that he will continue to promote good neigbourliness and support the security agencies for them to do their work.
The governor also promised that “we will continue to expand the economy and provide job opportunities for our people. We will continue to provide the leadership that the country needs at this time.
Osun state governor said criminality has no ethnic coloration and that some criminals are masquerading as herdsmen and must be identified.
“In Osun State we have a committee made up of Farmers-Herdsmen represented by MACBAN and government representatives. I recommend this for other states. Sometimes it’s a question of communication. Every Nigerian has a right to stay anywhere in the country.”
While Jigawa State governor said he is delighted to be at the meeting and is towing the position of his colleagues, he however said that, “There’s so much instigation in the south and in the north by those who don’t wish the country well to cause the crisis,” he said.
The governor added that they won’t tolerate criminality in any form and fight criminals – ethnic or religious inclination notwithstanding.
“In Jigawa, criminality is very low, everyone is engaged in fighting crime, even MACBAN do arrest criminals. The Ondo Governor did not order Fulani herdsmen out of Ondo State. He only said he wants to identify and profile those who will operate in the forests. Commend the collaboration among the security agencies in securing the country,” Abubakar said.
Abubakar Atiku Bagudu of Kebbi State in his address said insecurity is the same across the country.
“We need to invest in modernisation of pastoral farming to reduce crisis. Security agencies should work together to identify and apprehend criminally minded individuals in the society, whether they are Fulanis or not.”
On his part, the Ondo State governor, Rotimi Akeredolu appreciated Ekiti State governor Fayemi for initiating the meeting. He said kidnappers are using forest reserves as an area of operation for kidnapping.
“Even our Farmers are registered, we all agreed no night grazing, no under-aged grazing. We will ban grazing in cities. I assure you we can all work together to chase all criminals from the state. We must be able to identify and move them out of the forest reserves. We must protect everyone living in Ondo State,” Akeredolu said.