New Telegraph

Caleb don, others proffer solution to herder-farmers’ crisis

Against the backdrop of persistent crises between farmers and cattle herders in the country, a Professor of Nomadic Architecture and Deputy Vice- Chancellor (Academic) at Caleb University, Imota, Lagos, Prof Adedeji Daramola, has offered workable solutions that will end the problems. Daramola, a Consultant to the United Nations Habitat, however, recommended the introduction of farmers and livestock insurance policies as the practice in India, Ethiopia and Kenya, as one of the core solutions to the crisis. According to the don, the persistent crisis of farmers-herders in the country, resulting in the killing of several farmers and herders, as well as destruction of farm produce is redeemable if appropriate steps and actions are taken by the federal and state government.

He disclosed this at the just concluded 2nd National Conference, organised at the University of Ilorin (UNILORIN) with the theme: “Cattle Beyond Crisis: Interrogating the Cattle Resource in Nigeria.” As part of the recommended solution, he urged the Federal Government to visit the report of the research carried out at the Centre for Architectural Research and Development Over- seas (CARDO), Newcastle University, United Kingdom and the University of Ilorin, which contained core solutions to the crisis of farmers-herders in the country. The report Daramola once stated in his PhD Thesis submit- ted to the Department of Geography University of Ilorin, critically examined the factors to consider in ensuring peaceful co-existence of the farmers-herders in Nigeria.

He, however, explained further that the report clearly forecast the current challenges as a repercussion of poor handling of the situation, even as he identified what he described as “Ungoverned Space” as one of the critical fac- tors militating against solutions to banditry across the country. The Professor of Nomadic Architecture also reiterated that no meaningful resolution could be achieved without recourse to the farmers and herders mutual involvement as stakeholders, say- ing that the Federal Government requires an economic solution to the crisis. At the conference were the representatives of Miyetti Allah; Alhaja Abibat Seidu, who represented the wife of the Kwara State Governor, Dr Olufolake Abdurasaq; the Permanent Secretary, Kwara State Ministry of Tertiary Education.

The Chairman of the conference, Prof Usman Raheem, who ex- pressed excitement at the positive contributions of the participants, however, assured stakeholders that the recommendations of the conference would be published for the benefit of the country in particular, and that of the global community in general. In his keynote presentation, a former Vice-Chancellor of Ladoke Akintola University (LAUTECH), Ogbomoso, Prof Adeniyi Gbade- gesin, stated that there was ur- gent need to address the incessant farmers-herders conflicts in the country in view of the economic implications. Other speakers at the confer- ence included the Group Head, News and Public Affairs and Journalist Hangout in TVC Television, Mr Babajide Otitoju, who identified ranching as one of the global ac- ceptable standards of modern-day pastoralism. Also, Dr Murtala Ahmed Rufai from Usman Dan Fodio University, Sokoto, acknowledged the multi- farious factors militating against the quick resolution of the crisis as one of the major factors, and urged President Bola Tinubu-led Federal Government to show intense po- litical will in resolving the conflict, even as he stated that the problem is not elitist in nature but the it is indeed a cultural factor.

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