- Bauchi state governor, Bala Mohammed, has told Nigerians to stop blaming herdsmen for bearing arms
- Mohammed gave the warning on Thursday, February 11, in Bauchi, the state capital
- The governor, however, said the herdsmen have right to live anywhere they like within the country
Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi state has said herdsmen are not to be blamed for bearing firearms.
The Nation reports that the governor said they are only protecting themselves against cattle rustlers who attack, kill and take away their possessions.
Legit.ng gathered that the governor spoke as a special guest of honour at the launch of the inaugural edition of the Bauchi correspondents’ chapel of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ)’s magazine titled ‘Correspondents’ Watch” on Thursday, February 11.
It would be recalled a popular Yoruba rights activist, Sunday Adeyemo, well known as Sunday Igboho, had issued a quit notice to herdsmen accused of sundry crimes in the Ibarapa area of Oyo state and enforced same.
Reacting to the development, Mohammed said the herdsmen have the right to live anywhere as Nigerians, adding the forests where they graze their cows belong to nobody.
"The west doesn’t want to accommodate other tribes but we are accommodating your tribe in Bauchi. We have Yorubas who have stayed in Bauchi for over 150 years, some of them have been made permanent secretaries in Gombe, Bauchi and Borno.
"But because the Fulani man is practising the tradition of transhumans, pastoralism, he has been exposed to cattle rustlers who carry a gun, kill him and take away his cows he has no option to carry AK 47 because the government and the society are not protecting him. It’s the fault of the government.
”Nobody owns any forests in Nigeria, it’s owned by Nigeria. Under section 23, 24 and 25 of the constitution, every Nigerian is free to stay anywhere. Anybody can speak how but we are only exercising restraint."
The governor, who slammed his Benue counterpart, Samuel Orthom for poor handling of farmers-herders clashes in his state said he was very wrong to incite other tribes against the herdsmen.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng had previously reported that Governor Bala Mohammed on Thursday, February 4, revealed that he came to the verge of losing his office as a minister of the FCT due to a piece of land he allocated to Baze University in Abuja.
It was reported that Mohammed told Yusuf Ahmed, the founder and members of the university management, that as a minister under the then president, Goodluck Jonathan, a woman was seriously interested in the same piece of land given to the institution.