The Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN), South-East zone says it will extend the shut-down of cattle markets and settlement in other states in the zone. The association disclosed that the action is in a bid to purge itself of violent elements.
South-East Zonal Vice President of MACBAN, Alhaji Gidado Siddiki, disclosed this in Awka on Sunday.
Miyetti Allah had halted operations in cattle market and settlements in Enugu for two days to sensitise its members against violence. The move was executed in collaboration with Northern elders in Enugu. Siddiki explained that the action was neither a threat nor protest.
Nevertheless, he revealed that it was an attempt to address the numerous accusation on Fulani herdsmen over their involvement in crime and rape in the area from within.
Siddiki described the Enugu shut-down as a success. In addition, he revealed that a number of persons among them who did not have business with herding or other legitimate activities had been asked to leave their fold.
“We shut down livestock and perishable good markets to enable us sensitise our members on the need for peaceful coexistence. That they should be watchful to know when bad people infiltrate their midst and to chase them.
“We have told them to belong to a group, those selling cattle, those selling goats, those carrying goods. Everybody has to be identified by the leader of their group. Even in the Fulani settlement, people have to be known with their families.
“If there are people in these places who don’t have business, we are telling them to leave Enugu and the entire South-East because we want to know those who are among us. So, it is an internal audit.”
Siddiki says Miyetti Allah members have been advised to stop migration
Siddiki commiserated with families of those who lost their loved ones in recent violent attack in Enugu. Also, he expressed the commitment of his members to ensuring that a recurrence is avoided.
Equally important, Siddiki is also the leader of the Fulani community in Anambra.
He expressed the observation that most of the troubles were caused by migrant herders. Meanwhile, he called on his members to stop migrating from state to state within the South-East.
He added that the sensitisation would continue to local governments in Enugu after which they would move to other states.
“The exercise is to show the indigenes, our hosts in the Southeast that we are so worried by the complaints and accusations of violence and crime which is pointing at us.
“We want to condole the families of those that lost their loved ones. Also, we want to assure them that we are worried about the development.
“We started with Enugu as the regional head of South-East. But we are going into other states of Abia, Ebonyi, Anambra and Imo to ensure that the message gets to our members everywhere. Already, our members in these states are waiting for us.
“We have identified that those causing problems among the Fulani are the migrants. That is why we are saying that migration should stop. People should stay where they are and graze their cattle,” he said.
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