Herders under the Miyetti Allah Kauta Hore have said they will not recognise the Southern governors’ anti-grazing deadline, describing it as satanic.
This is as the September 1 deadline set aside by Southern governors for the banning of open grazing nears.
In May, another herder group, Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association supported the Southern governors’ ban on open grazing, and challenged Northern governors to follow the lead of their Southern counterparts.
The national secretary of the Miyetti Allah Kauta Hore, Saleh Alhassan, in an interview with Leadership, said members of the organisation would not recognise any anti-open grazing policy in the country.
“We don’t recognise anti-grazing law. Nobody can do anti-grazing policy in Nigeria where we are constitutionally guaranteed the right of movement and occupation,” Alhassan said, referring to the September 1 deadline set up by the Southern governors to ban the open grazing policy.
“I think that (open grazing) has been overtaken by events where the federal government is reviving the grazing reserves and grazing routes. Ranches are coming up across the states. Any policy that will heat up the polity, I don’t think is desirable for the country now.
“I think they are just beating a dead horse. After all, how many grazing reserves do we have in Southern Nigeria. Ninety per cent of the cows we have in Southern Nigeria are meant for business. They are not there for grazing. The cattle are taken there for two or three weeks before they take them to the market. We don’t even understand what they mean by anti-open grazing,” Alhassan said.
He added: “That thing is Satanic. That kind of policy is Satanic. Anything of Satan cannot prevail over light. They will fail.”
Alhassan threatened the governors over their 2023 political plans of a power shift to the South, declaring they would not get their wish.
“The power that they are looking for, they will not get. We have reported them to almighty Allah to create confusion in the camp of the enemy. And confusion will be their lot. Where is Sunday Igboho? Where is Nnamdi Kanu today? They are all in jail. The God of the pastoralists is protecting them like the God of Elijah that speaks with fire; he has fired all of them.
“They can’t win. They are losers. It is a negative policy. We are supporting the federal government now to revive the grazing reserves, to revive the grazing routes, do ranches, settle the herders over time. Is that what they don’t want? Then they are the real bandits. If you are looking for a real bandit, it is Governor (Samuel) Ortom (of Benue State). He is the real bandit. And he thinks he can fight the Fulani ethnic nationality. He does not know that we are not only in Nigeria. We are an African tribe.
“We are in charge of the United Nations. The pioneer secretary of the African Union is a Fulani herder. What is Ortom talking about? They better play politics that can unite this country. All these things they are saying, they can’t do anything as far as Nigeria is concerned.
“We are in our country, we are not going anywhere. We will not be intimidated by anybody and we are peace-loving. It’s their own cup of tea. After all, they are the consumers of the cows,” Alhassan said, adding that the plans of the governors had failed.
“Their plans have already failed. See Sunday Igboho there; he is languishing in Beninoise prison. See Nnamdi Kanu who was captured in Kenya. Forget about them. They are the ones sponsoring all these killings. It is the handiwork of Biafra. They want to set the country on fire.”
He went on to threaten Governor Ortom with arrest after his tenure as governor.
“These people know what they are doing. They are just there to steal money, especially Governor Ortom. He is there to steal the money of Benue State. And we are waiting for him. Immediately he leaves power, if Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) does not arrest him, our vigilantes will arrest him and hand him over to the Nigeria Police to be prosecuted like a common criminal. It’s just a matter of time. He will certainly join Dariye and Co. because he has eaten security votes in billions and he has masterminded the killing of innocent people in Benue State and has lied to the entire world,” Alhassan said.
Meanwhile, Governor Samuel Ortom has said that the narrative by the presidency that his position on the state of the nation amounts to preaching genocide in the country does not make sense.
Ortom in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Terver Akase said the presidency via its “unguarded comments” would one day plunge the country into more chaos.
The governor said he was aware of a plot by the Presidency to cause crisis in the state and make the state ungovernable and declare a state of emergency.
This is even as governor said no matter how the presidency tries to blackmail him, Nigerians are more aware of who is promoting genocide in the country.
He said it is rather the federal government, through the presidency, that is promoting genocide by deliberately nicknaming Fulani militia killers across the country as bandits in order to hide their identity, stressing that doing so would only aggravate killings and food insecurity.