Armed Herdsmen: Northern govs set to reconcile Ortom, Bala Mohammed ― El-Rufai

•Says differences not fundamental

Kaduna State governor, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai has said the forum of governors in the Northern part of the country, would reconcile the Bauchi State governor, Bala Mohammed with his counterpart in Benue State, Samuel Ortom.

Governor El-Rufai made the disclosure on Thursday while speaking with newsmen at the All Progressives Congress (APC) National Secretariat in Abuja.

The Kaduna State governor maintained that their differences were not fundamental and would be resolved by the forum of Northern governors.

He said: “I just left Kaduna, we had a meeting of the Northern State Governors.

“Bauchi State Governor, Benue Governor were there, it will be sorted out. It could be differences in option. It is not fundamental. We are all committed to solving the problem of movement up and down by the herders because once we solve that problem, the clashes between farmers and herders will reduce significantly.

“It will be sorted out, there will always be differences in opinion but not fundamental. The Northern State Governors Forum is committed to ending the nomadic movement of cattle and people in the shortest possible time and we are all working.”

Checks revealed that the Bauchi State governor had recently justified the occupation of forest reserves by herdsmen while he also claimed that those in possession of AK-47 rifle needed it to protect themselves.

He particularly accused Rotimi Akeredolu and Samuel Ortom, governors of Ondo and Benue state, respectively of infringing on the rights of Fulanis to leave anywhere they seem fit in the country.

The Benue state governor in his response alleged that his colleague in Bauchi state was promoting terrorism by giving support to Herdsmen in possession of firearms.

He said: ‘From the way and manner my brother and governor of Bauchi spoke in support of the herdsmen carrying arms, I suspect that he is among those who want to kill me.

“Should anything happen to me, they should not look far…I wouldn’t want to be joining issues with my brother, friend, and colleague Bauchi governor.

“But, since he has continued to vilify, intimidate and blackmail me, it is said that silence is consent. I am compelled to respond to him.

“I am beginning to think that my brother, the governor of Bauchi State is part of the terrorist organisation that is terrorising this country.

“Why do I say this? This is the same governor who took the oath of office to protect the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

“This constitution does not leave room for allowing foreign herdsmen to come in without valid papers.

“It is quite disappointing to hear a governor who took the oath of office say this.

“Maybe, he should go back and check the oath of office he took, to check maybe the constitution gives room for foreign terrorist herdsmen to come into Nigeria.”


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