Miyetti Allah Finally Breaks Silence On Threatening Letter To Delta State

 Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association (MACBAN) says the 72-hour ultimatum issued to Delta state by an unknown group to reverse the ban on open grazing is from mischief-makers.

On Sunday, an unknown group threatened to attack Asaba and Agbor in Delta if Ifeanyi Okowa, governor of the state, fails to withdraw the resolution to ban open grazing within 72 hours.

The unsigned letter containing the threat was published in some locations across the state.

“We hereby demand the Governor of Delta State to immediately withdraw his earlier stand on the call to ban open grazing in 17 regions (referring to 17 southern states) in not less than 72 hours from the above date, and also withdraw his position as the leading voice for the governors,” the letter said.

In May, southern governors met in Asaba and resolved to ban open grazing in their region — a decision that elicited divergent views.

The threat did not go down well with some socio-cultural groups like Southern and Middle Belt Elders Forum (SMBLF) and Pan Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF) who threatened to fight back.

Speaking on the development, Othman Ngelzarma, national secretary of MACBAN, in an interview on Channels TV on Monday, said such statements from an unknown group should not be given consideration.

Ngelzarma said the resolution against open grazing is targeted at the Fulani staying in the southern part of the country.

He said northern governors should discuss with their southern counterparts in order to protect the rights of pastoralists.

“Such statement that comes from faceless unknown groups shouldn’t be given any serious consideration. I believe this statement must be coming from mischief makers, People who are out to tarnish the image of the Fulanis and pastoralists,” he said.

“It is because of such negative profiling by the media that makes us believe that the anti-open grazing laws being intended to be promulgated by the southern states are not laws stopping open grazing, but I believe these laws are laws against Fulanis living in the southern part of the country.

“The Northern governors must be up and doing and they must also begin to open discussions with their southern counterparts for them to put their heads together and come up with a solution that can work for both the north and the south.

“Respecting the fundamental human rights of the pastoralists as citizens. Their right to movement, their right to pray, their right to trade, their right to liberty.”

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