National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu has advised Fulani herdsmen to embrace modernity and stop killing people.
The former Lagos governor also said the herdsmen have no right to cling to the obsolete nomadic way of life by killing others.
”The crux of the matter is that the nomadic way of life is fast becoming obsolete. Large scale nomadic practice does not belong in this day and age. This is reality and it is inescapable.
”Thus, herders have no right to cling to this way of life by killing others. Government must stop their violence but also offer them a viable new way of life by moving them toward more modern, non-nomadic cattle rearing,” Tinubu stated.
Tinubu who was represented by a former Commissioner for Finance in Lagos State, Olawale Edun, at the Daily Trust dialogue, said killings by Fulani herdsmen is not a recent occurence.
“It is important that we place the current crisis in proper context. No one should pretend that this evil just suddenly appeared from nowhere. We have been living and dying with this lethal situation for many years.
”In years past, there have been herdsmen attacks smaller than this. There also have been attacks larger than this.
”The current hue and cry against these killings is hopefully a sign that we are maturing as a nation. That we shall no longer countenance the wanton destruction of human lives no matter the religion, ethnicity or origin of the victims or the villains. If so, maybe this nation is coming of age and none too soon.
”As such, this outcry is as welcome as it is overdue. We should have been agitating in this manner 5, 10, 15 years ago. Lives would have been saved. For reasons I cannot completely fathom we have come late to the point of strong, collective outrage at this bloodletting. Yet, all in all, late is better than never in this regard.
”This spirit of compassion and care must be enshrined in our political culture because it is integral to national greatness and democratic progress. True patriotism requires that you love more than the concept of Nigeria. You must love the people who comprise this nation, whether they worship in a church, mosque, and shrine or not at all.
”Over the course of history, nations have faced crises more crimson than this. Through wise policy, many nations emerged from the thicket better situated to realize their better destiny.
These nations and their people are no better than us. We can and we must do the same thing.
Against this backdrop we must take prudent action. It is incumbent on the federal government to do what past governments neglected to do. We must forget our age-old prejudices in order to resolve this problem. What we need is serious committed action.
At its essence, this crisis was not born of religious or ethnic hatred. It is about a shrinking amount of grass and water.
In recent years the desert has expanded, consuming land once used to graze livestock. This pushed cattle herders farther and farther south to collide with the farmers who were there.
Ecological peril spawned economic conflict which descended into violence.
This violence has taken on religious, ethnic and regional consequences because of the identities of the parties involved. This tragic episode tolls a caution to us all.
Left to fester, this problem expanded to assume dimensions that now tremors the body politic.
This is what too often happens when dire problems are left unattended. Now, the current administration is moving to arrest the lethal situation.
I welcome the deployment of more law enforcement and military into the troubled areasThese security measures will stem the immediate violence and loss of life.
As we commend these security measures, we must not lose sight of the fact that the problem bears an economic origin. Thus, agro-economic policy initiatives must help shape the lasting solution.
The crux of the matter is that the nomadic way of life is fast becoming obsolete. Large scale nomadic practice does not belong in this day and age. This is reality and it is inescapable.
Thus, herders have no right to cling to this way of life by killing others. Government must stop their violence but also offer them a viable new way of life by moving them toward more modern, non-nomadic cattle rearing.
To resolve this lethal problem, government must implement a multi-dimensional policy that encompasses security, agro-economic, educational and emergency relief elements. This is the art and mastery of governance that our nation and its complex problems require.
The APC leader also identified 8 measures the Buhari administration must take to develop the country.
”In addition to mending this rupture of peace, I believe those who seek to enshrine good governance must boldly act to improve the quality of life of the people.”
“1. We are a populous nation with large, ever-growing cities. We need to provide jobs for this expanding urban population.
This means we must press forward with a national industrial policy by fostering strategic industries that will provide employment into the foreseeable future.
2. We need a national infrastructure plan that envisions a coherent and integrated infrastructural grid, as no national economy may grow beyond the capacity of the infrastructure that serves it. This particularly is true of electrical power.
3. We must reject the notion of orthodox economics that governmental balancing of budgets or surpluses are always good. In our case, following this mainstream approach may lead to perpetual stagnation and deter us from the brave steps required to promote true development.
In this regard, an immediate opportunity to provide stimulus to the economy while simultaneously alleviating the hardship of retirees and old-age pensioners presents itself, through the comprehensive tackling of outstanding pension payments. While what is needed is a holistic review and reform of the disjointed social security and welfare apparatus, a good place to start would be the clearing up of existing pension arrears and the establishment of a framework for averting their future build-up.
The wider task of comprehensive social security reform would inevitably require a high-level body to review and advise on the harmonization of various initiatives and deductions from workers’ payrolls in the name of welfare, such as pension contributions, national housing fund, national health insurance etc
4. Monetary policy should move toward lower interest rates to make credit is more accessible to business and the consumer. This will spur industrial investment and help us reach more conducive levels of consumer demand. It also will dissuade people from corrupt temptations.
The need to pay for homes and other costly items in one lump sum payment is a strong invitation to corruption. For example, if mortgages and credit instruments are more available to the judiciary, jurists would be able to purchase homes, decent care and other items considered the basic amenities of modern life via long-term installment payments that can be met through their salaries. Able to purchase these things properly and thus afforded a comfortable life, jurists would be less vulnerable to improper inducements.
5. The government-backed home mortgage system must be re-structured and land conveyance more streamlined make mortgages and all forms of landed transactions are easier and less bureaucratic. This will increase the wealth of the nation and improve the efficiency of land use. It also opens the door to affordable housing for millions of families now beyond the reach of owning their own homes.
6. Agriculture remains the backbone of the nation. We must help the common farmer by improving rural output and incomes. Here, we must revive an old policy that served us well. We must return to commodity exchange boards which will allow farmers to secure good prices and hedge against loss. An agricultural mortgage loan corporation should be inaugurated to further promote these goals.
7. To achieve better levels of overall governance, we need to re-balance the duties between federal and state governments by giving states more power, authority and resources.
8. Last, Government must be sufficiently bold to begin a process that will ultimately result in a government-backed pension plan for all elderly Nigerians, this is something akin to Social Security which all great nations provide for those of advanced age.”