By Adelola Amihere
The leadership of the All Farmers Association of Nigeria, AFAN has said that the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigerian, MACBAN is not responsible for the killings of farmers experienced in some parts of Nigeria.
President of AFAN, Arc Kabiru Ibrahim stated this while addressing journalists yesterday in Abuja after its NEC meeting comprising the 36 State chapters, FCT and the Miyetti Allah Group.
He insisted that the Group was a peaceful one as both groups have reached a resolution to work together to foster peace in the country as well as expose the real criminals perpetuating the killings.
He said: “The real herdsman does not carry AK 47, does not raze a whole settlement but desires peace to harness his pastoral activities. We welcome the idea of ranch development with input from the end user and are amenable to sitting down with experts to add value to government efforts.
According to him, MACBAN is the only Fulani Group that the Association is working closely with adding that AFAN have not received any request from other groups to work with them.
“The stance of the AFAN that we lead today, they will have to approach us to really understand and sympathise with their positions.
“The other Miyetti Allah did not come to us. We don’t know them we are talking with the people we know. We have been looking at what they have been doing and we have been dealing with them in many fora and we know that they are peace loving and what they are doing is not inimical to the farmers, therefore, we synergise and work with them to fashion out peace for Nigeria.
“If by this press conference, the other Miyetti Allah groups are amenable to sitting with us to fashion out peace for Nigeria, they are most welcome,” he said.
Also speaking, the National Secretary of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association, MACBA, Baba Othman Ngelzelma insisted that MACBA is a registered organisation and its members are not responsible for the killings going on.
“I have to make it abundantly clear to the media to avoid this issue of misconception. We represent MACBAN. We are a peaceful association and we have been working together with AFAN to bring peace to the country.
“We don’t represent the entire Fulani in Nigeria, we only represent our registered members who are legitimate pastoralists and peace loving pastoralists who are doing their peaceful, legitimate business of cattle rearing.
“We will never condone any criminality, in fact that is the more reason why AFAN has accepted to work together with us as collaborators to bring peace. We are in line with any policy of the federal government that will bring an end of this crisis in Nigeria,” he pointed out”.
Speaking further, Arc Ibrahim who assured Nigerians of a bumper harvest this year, also advocated the need for government to engage herdsmen in order to fashion out the best model for the ranches.
He insisted the business of ranching should not be the sole business of government but of private investors as done in other climes.