The Impact of the Herdsmen-Farmers Conflict in Benue
How it all started…
The dispute between the Fulani herdsmen and Benue farmers has been on for years now, and each time there is a physical clash or confrontation, all the government does is promise to remedy the situation. Yet, nothing has ever been done. Infact, the impact of the herdsmen-farmers conflict in Benue is at its dawn.
The recent killings of the indigenes of Benue state by the Fulani herdsmen started when the Fulani herdsmen accused the indigenes of stealing a good number of cows from their herd. Reports had it that the herdsmen have initially laid a complaint and issued threats before executing the killings.
The people of Benue on the other hand were getting really uncomfortable having Fulani herdsmen graze on their land. This is almost normal in a multi ethnic state like Nigeria; indigenes feel insecure with the growing number of foreigners all in the name of business and the search for greener pastures. Indeed, there are rumors of gun battles between the Benue people of a certain popular senator’s local government area and the herdsmen whenever the herdsmen came into their land.
What are its negative impacts…?
For the love of Benue state, for the love of Nigeria and the love of all human life, this conflict should stop. Nigerians may not understand why until the harvest period. People should understand that both farmers and herdsmen are integral to food production in our country and should be cared for by all means possible, if their relevance must remain. Already, the people of Benue have suffered losses, what with the floods of 2017 and the more recent clashes with the herdsmen. Should this trend continue unhindered, the toll would tell badly on the nation come July/August – the harvest time because there would be a very low output from the food basket of the nation, thus plunging the nation into even more dire economic straits.
It is imperative that the Federal House of Assembly and the Presidency look into and act immediately on the dispute between both parties. The existing norm of the Presidency to turn a blind eye towards unsavory events in the nation will only cause this issue to escalate. The government should look towards conciliation and mediation in this issue as this is the only way the existing social breakdown can be turned around. This way, the reality of the facade called Nigeria would remain stable for the time being. Or at least, I hope so.
We are all needed to make things better!!!