The Voters Awareness Initiative says the measures agreed on at the meeting by the south west governors and the leadership of the Miyette Allah Cattle Breeders Association, are not enough to check “the nefarious activities of the herders in the region, or other acts of criminality in other parts of the country.”
In a statement signed by its President, Wale Ogunade, the VAI said, “Our attention has been drawn to the reported communiqué issued following a meeting between Governors of the South-Western states and the leadership of Miyette Allah Cattle Breeders Association (MACBAN), held in Akure. Ondo State, wherein members of the latter agreed to a formal registration, desist from night grazing as well as stop under-age herding, among others. This is though commendable but certainly not enough in curbing the nefarious activities of the herders in the region, or other acts of criminality in other parts of the country.
“We are not unaware of the fact that Nigeria is poor in data gathering and management. We are all witnesses to the plethora of data, already gathered in the country which included samples of fingerprints, yet crimes are committed daily without the law enforcement agents been able to apprehend culprits. We dare say registration of herders – which we believe will include taking their fingerprints samples- may not achieve anything in the long run.
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“Voters Awareness Initiative (VAI) is of the candid view that this measure is not far-reaching enough in achieving the set goal of controlling the inanities of criminality in the region, or similar acts in other parts of the country. We note that no mention was made of possession of firearm by the herders and other unauthorized persons, there ought to be a categorical statement restating outright ban on possession of firearms and that any individual or group of persons (herder or not) caught with such weapon be arrested and prosecuted accordingly.
“The South West Governors and MACBAN’s communiqué was also silent on the role of Amotekun in the enforcement of the agreement.
“We believe that Amotekun, should be charged with the monitoring of the entire zone, and report to the Chief Security Officer of each state (the Governors).
“VAI urges State governors in the other regions to take a cue from their counterparts in the South West and evolve lasting solutions to security challenges in their states.
“Chief Executive Officers full authority as Chief Security Officers and therefore they should give all necessary logistics to Amotekun and all security agencies to ensure that peace prevail across Nigeria.”