Senators from the northern part of the country, under the aegis of Northern Senators Forum, on Wednesday wondered what would become of the country if the people of the North reciprocate the position of those asking Fulanis to quit states in the South-East.
While calling for an end to the categorization of all herdsmen as Fulani, they warned against provocative statements that could inflame tempers in the country in the view of the massacre of Ukpabi Nimbo villagers in Uzo-Uwani LGA of Enugu State by herdsmen.
The lawmakers, who appreciated the steps so far taken by the Federal Government to contain the problems of herdsmen/farmers clashes in the country, specifically tasked community leaders (including governors) “to be careful when making statements on these ugly incidences.”
Chairman of the Forum, Senator Abdullahi Adamu, who read the communiqué at the end of the lawmakers meeting, restated their resolve “to continue their complete support for President Muhammadu Buhari in order to bring about even development to all sections of the country.”
Adamu said that members of the Forum further agreed to work assiduously to enact laws and amend existing ones when and where necessary in order to promote the interest of Northern Nigeria in particular and Nigeria in general.
He added that they noted specially the steps taken by the government to wipe out incidences of insurgency and are hopeful that in no distant time, “we shall say bye-bye to the problem of insurgency.”
On the tagging of every herdsman as Fulani, the Nasarawa-born lawmaker said, “We have tried to kill the idea that every herdsman is Fulani. I am a farmer but I am not Fulani by birth. It is very very wrong to say that everybody you find with a cow is Fulani.”
He recalled that when Chief Olu Falae was kidnapped the news went round that the kidnappers were Fulani, noting that when those responsible for kidnapping the elder statesman were eventually arrested, it was discovered that they were not Fulani.
Adamu, who said he saw a lot of Yoruba cattle rearers when he traveled to the western part of the country, insisted that a cattle rearing is no longer the exclusive preserve of the Fulani.
Noting that there are some groups in the South-East geopolitical zone that have warned Fulani people to leave their part of the country, he declared: “if people from the North say the same thing of people from the south East, we wonder where it will lead the country.”