Rabiu Musa Kwakwanso, a former governor of Kano State and now senator, says asking Fulani herdsmen not graze their cattle in the South West is not good for the unity of Nigeria
RABIU Musa Kwakwanso, a former governor of Kano State, has taken exception to a call by some leaders from the South West for the exit of Fulani herdsmen from the zone saying the call was not in tandem with the spirit of unity tof the country.
Kwakwanso expressed his view in Ibadan at the official handing over of two newly-completed buildings to Government College, Ibadan, as part of activities marking the reunion of the Old Boys Association and jubilee celebration of the 1965 set of the school which held on Saturday, October 24.
According to him, the call was not well thought out and would be counter-productive if not reversed.
About a fortnight ago, some Yoruba leaders had warned that if the hostility by the herdsmen was not checked, they might be forced to ask Fulani herdsmen to look elsewhere for the grazing of their cattle.
Kwakwanso said sacking the herdsmen would not anyone. He said: “If you sack the Fulani from here or you fight them, maybe it is because you are here. If you are a Yoruba man based in Kano, I don’t think you can contemplate sacking the Fulani.
“I am from Kano, but right now I am in Ibadan. Where you are is your home. Today, Ibadan is my home. God forbids, if something bad happens here, it will affect me. If it happens in my village, so far I am not there, they won’t see me.”
He further said that the problem of Fulani herdsmen was not an isolated matter. He said: “If these Fulanis can be educated, things won’t be the same again. I am one of them, I am a Fulani and I hope you know that my parents settled over the years. My parents sent me to school and my children are going to school, I don’t think if I get some cattle, I will go into forest to rear them. That is education for you.
‘’The key thing here is that whether in the South or the North or Africa in general, we are all over, it is only that we call them Fulanis in this part of the world but in other places they call them different names, but we are all over the continent. These Fulanis should be educated and be settled, by that they will develop the modern way of keeping livestock.”
The former governor, now a senator, said Britain, the United States and other developed countries had been able to establish ranch system because of education and that the Fulani herdsmen roaming about in Niger, Cameroun, Nigeria and other countries were actually endangering their lives. “It is not good for anybody, the economy, not even security. That is for the future,” he said.
He said government should provide for them facilities like such as grazing areas so that the situation would be less precarious for everyone concerned.
— Oct 26, 2015 @ 13:55 GMT