The Nigerian Football Federation, NFF has been asked to organise a peace match between the Super Eagles and a joint team comprising the Fulani herdsmen and the people of Agatu.
This was part of the recommendations made at a town hall meeting between the 1 Idoma Initiative and Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) held in Abuja last week to resolve the lingering crisis between farmers and Fulani herdsmen in Benue State especially in Agatu Local Government Area.
According to both parties, the match will raise awareness of the peaceful resolution of the conflict and also raise funds towards the reconstruction of the properties destroyed in the crisis.
Other recommendations included:
1. The immediate cessation of hostilities between the Idomas in Agatu and the Fulani Nomadic community carrying out grazing activities in Agatu.
2. The national leadership of MACBAN will direct its Benue and Nasarawa States chapters to immediately direct all Fulani herdsmen carrying out grazing activities in Agatu to immediately withdraw and move to Nasarawa State while dialogue towards the peaceful resolution of the conflict is on-going. While the Agatu youths should desist from patrolling the river bank until when better understanding is sought between the two parties.
3. The Federal Government is urged to immediately set up a high power committee that will include the leadership of the 1 Idoma Initiative and Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) to comprehensively look into the immediate and remote causes of the crisis with the view of finding a lasting solution. This committee should also be mandated to ascertain the level of destruction of lives and properties from both sides.
4. The Federal Government should draw up a roadmap to commence the immediate reconstruction, rehabilitation and re-integration of the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) from Agatu back to their various communities. Similarly, the Fulanis who lost their cattle during the crisis should be compensated accordingly.
5. All future conflicts arising between the Idoma people of Agatu and Fulani herdsmen should be addressed through dialogue rather than violent means as was the recent case.
6. The Federal Ministry of Agriculture is urged to create and give adequate attention to the Livestock value chain development in Nigeria in order to cater for the growing demands of the nomadic community to address the imbalance between agronomy and livestock development in Nigeria.
7. The Federal government is urged to as a matter of urgency support 1 Idoma Initiative and MACBAN to embark on advocacy campaigns on their members in order to enhance the spirit of brotherhood, love and tolerance especially among the youths.
8. The Ministry of Agriculture is urged to immediately organize a broad stake holders meeting between cattle breeders and farmers with a view to providing short, medium and long term solutionsto the crisis between cattle breeders and farmers in Nigeria. While the Federal, States and Local governments are urged to evolve a strategic framework for the implementation of the long term solution to the problem of grazing.
9. We condemn in totality the proliferation of fire arms especially among the warring parties and pledge to collaborate with the Federal Government and the two State governments of Benue and Nasarawa to encourage the laying down of arms by both parties and to also appeal to the government to consider granting amnesty to those who accept to lay down their arms and embrace lasting peace.
10. The Federal Government through the Federal Ministry of Agriculture is urged to address the issue of grazing reserve and mapping out of the Primary, Secondary and Tertiary cattle routes in Nigeria so as to put an end to the problem of perennial clashes between local farmers and Fulani herdsmen. The Ministry of Agriculture is urged to propose a Bill to resolve the above issue while the National Assembly is urged to consider and pass such bill into law expeditiously.
11. The 1 Idoma Initiative and the MACBAN should organize continuous stakeholders meetings to assess the progress made on the implementation of the letter of the communiqué issued after the Town Hall meeting.
12. Both Associations should visit the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the Governors of Benue and Nasarawa States, the Chief of Defence Staff, the Chief of Army Staff, the Inspector General of Police, The DG NEMA and other relevant organisations, to enlist their support in the sustenance of peace between the Agatu Community and the Fulani herdsmen.
13. We jointly call for the provision of adequate and permanent security in the crisis area up to the time when peace and security will be fully restored and thereafter.
14. The 1 Idoma Initiative and the MACBAN resolve to write an appreciation and commendation letter to Ordinary (Dr) Ahmad Isah, the President and founder of Brekete Family on his role as an arbiter towards the resolution of the Agatu and Fulani Herdsmen crisis from the onset.
15. We urge the Executive Governor of Benue State Dr Samuel Ortom to immediately visit Agatu with his cabinet members for an on the spot assessment of the situation and ensure that rapid development of the crisis areas are commenced. We believe when this is done, it will go a long way in pacifying the victims of the crisis.
16. While we conclude by appreciating the effort of the Federal Government in addressing the general security problems of the country, we have no doubt in our minds that the crisis in Agatu will also receive the concern of the Federal government with the view to proffering the immediate remedy to the problem.
FULANI HERDSMEN TO PLAY MATCH AGAINST SUPPER EAGLE TEAM
Reviewed by Link Naija