The Governor of Delta State, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, has held a forum with stakeholders to foster peaceful co-existence between farmers, host communities and herdsmen in Delta State.
This is part of efforts to reduce the clashes between herdsmen and communities in the state.
The meeting, which took place at the Unity Hall, Government House, Asaba, had as its theme, ‘Fostering Peaceful Co-existence Between Farmers, Host Communities and Herdsmen in Delta State’.
Governor Okowa, while declaring the event open, urged participants to speak freely about the ways out of the quagmire to ensure a peaceful state where the people can carry out their business activities without fear.
The Commissioner of Police, Mr Alkali Usman, in his speech, called for tolerance, cooperation, mutual respect and peaceful co-existence among the people, groups and the local communities.
There was free flow of information from the stakeholders as they spoke about likely suspects, causes of the attacks, their pains and likely solutions.
In their responses, representatives of Miyetti Allah, Miyatti Allah Kautu, Cattle Dealers Association and Cattle Breeders Association suggested that they should be part of the local security to help fish out the bad eggs among the cattle rearers.
The forum resolved that security agents need to be more proactive and arrest anybody caught with arms and prosecute such persons. They agreed that this will ensure that farmers and villagers move about freely without fear of herdsmen attacks.
The State Governor who was the chief moderator, after listening to all the suggestions from stakeholders, said that a committee would be set up to look at all the positions stipulated at the forum in order to find a lasting solution to the menace.
Present at the meeting were representatives of traditional rulers’ council, communities, farmers, local government council chairmen, Miyetti Allah, Miyetti Allah Cattle Dealers Association, Cattle Breeders Association, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Muslim leaders, civil society organisations, the military, Police, Department of State Security (DSS) and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) as well as the Nigeria Immigration Service.