- MACBAN is very much aware of the fact that there are herdsmen who are not actually Nigerians
- The herders association, therefore, called on the federal government to separate it from other illegal cattle rearers who come into the country almost daily
- Also, the body urged the government to support its members economically after they suffered losses in attacks from some ill-minded persons
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In order to distance itself from killer herdsmen who may not even be Nigerians, the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders’ Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) has called on the federal government to prevent the migration of some herds through legal means.
MACBAN said one of the ways the government can achieve this is by using the Economic Community of West African State (ECOWAS) transhumance certificate protocol, The Nation reports.
The herders' associations came to this resolve in a meeting with its chairman, Board of Trustees, Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar III, held in Abuja on Thursday, February 4.
The suggestion of the body is contained in a statement signed by national secretary, Alhaji Baba Ngelzarma.
Ngelzarma said some of the objectives of the meeting was to change the stereotyped narrative on social and mass media that all cattle rearers are dangerous persons.
He pleaded with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) to distinguish its name, Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders’ Association of Nigeria, "from that of a newly registered organisation bearing the same Miyetti Allah, so as not to confuse the public."
Added to this the secretary said it was agreed upon in the meeting that there is a crying need for the government to vigorously begin sensitisation and re-orientation programmes for nomads and their children.
Moreover, speaking on the loss the herdsmen have recorded so far, the group called on the government to help them with some economic support.
To this effect, the body said:
“The meeting also called on the federal government to introduce social support programmes, as is done to other sectors of the economy such as farmers and miners, the petroleum sector.
“This will alleviate the huge losses of livestock; taking into consideration the over five million cattle that have been lost as a result of banditry, cattle rustling, kidnapping and climate change."
Meanwhile, the speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, had said that dialogue was the only solution to the herdsmen crisis ravaging most parts of Nigeria, especially the southwest.
Gbajabiamila stated this in his talk with State House correspondents after his meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday, February 3.