PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari said in Abuja on Monday, January 25, that poverty, injustice and the lack of job opportunities were mainly responsible for inter-communal and intra-communal conflicts in Nigeria.
Buhari, who made the remarks while receiving a delegation from the Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue, an organisation active in the promotion of peace in Nigeria, said to achieve enduring peace in the country, greater effort must be made to eradicate poverty and injustice.
He described ethnic and religious conflicts in parts of the country as outward manifestations of underlying problems of joblessness, injustice and poverty.
On conflicts between farmers and herdsmen, the president said that a plan to map out grazing areas would soon be presented to the Nigerian Governors Forum as a temporary solution to the frequent conflicts until cattle owners were persuaded to adopt other means of rearing their cattle.
Earlier, David Harland, executive director of the Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue, told Buhari that following their success in facilitating the settlement of the inter-ethnic and inter-religious conflicts in Plateau State, the group had moved to Kaduna State.
He expressed the hope that the techniques used in bringing peace to Plateau State could soon be deployed to deal with the Boko Haram insurgency and other conflicts in Nigeria.
Indeed, repeated clashes between Fulani herdsmen and farmers have led to thousands of deaths.
For instance, on Sunday, January 24, Okozie Okereofor, a chief superintendent of Police and divisional Police officer, DPO, in charge of Vunokilang Police Station in Girei Local Government Area of Adamawa State was killed alongside 30 other people in an attack by suspected Fulani herdsmen.
Okereofor was said to have been ambushed when he was a leading a team of his men to investigate the crisis going on in the area. He was killed during the shootout with his assailants.
The suspected herdsmen raided four villages namely Demsare, Wunamokoh, Dikajam and Taboungo in what was characterised as a vengeance mission over an existing feud with farmers in the area. Many houses and farmlands were destroyed during the attack.
— Jan 26, 2016 @ 14:25 GMT