The pan-Yoruba socio-political organisation, Afenifere, has condemned claims by the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Bola Tinubu that the crisis between herdsmen and farmers was due to water scarcity and not religious.
Tinubu who was represented by an Executive Commissioner of the Nigerian Communications Commission, Sunday Dare, in Abuja yesterday had explained that the desertification in most parts of the North had caused herders to move southward with their cattle in search of greener pastures contrary to insinuations.
“The government must help herders gradually shift from their traditional nomadic existence to a more static lifestyle. We have to face the reality that modernity is making the nomadic way counterproductive and inefficient.
“Unoccupied, isolated land can quickly be turned into grazing areas in the affected states. In the long run, this will enable herders to better maintain their livestock and thus their own livelihood,” he added.
But reacting, Afenifere’s Publicity Secretary, Yinka Odumakin in a statement on Tuesday, stated that the former governor was only endorsing the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association’s position to convert the entire country into a cattle colony.
“We totally reject this position as it is very backward in modern times and contrary to the consensus of all peace-loving Nigerians that what we need to solve the herdsmen’s siege on farmers is to have ranches.
“Senator Tinubu has lived in very enlightened societies like the United States and Britain; If he was still living in any of such countries, would he suggest that grazing routes should be established at this age and time.”
The association added, “We admonish him that he is free to play his politics the way it suits him but he should tread softly in playing games with the lives of our people by making outlandish propositions on issues which have been settled.
“Tinubu can give his residence in Bourdillon for cattle colony but our people will not accept their land being converted into cattle grazing routes.”