- Abdulrahman Dambazau says the federal government took the decision as part of efforts to curtail clashes between farmers and herdsmen
- The effort includes the introduction of biometric registration to monitor the movement of people, goods and livestock into Nigeria
- Danbazau says 60 percent of the people in West Africa are Nigerians
Abdulrahman Dambazau, Nigeria’s interior minister, said on Thursday, May 17, in Abuja that the federal government has introduced the use of biometric registration to monitor the movement of people, goods and livestock into the country.
Danbazau spoke at a special town hall meeting to address farmers/herdsmen crises reportedly noting that Nigerians make up 60 percent of the people in West Africa and thus has a high migration level.
Daily Independent reports that Dambazau said the new move was important as a result of the ECOWAS free movement treaty which Nigeria is a signatory.
Noting that a conference was recently organised within the ECOWAS sub-region to review its protocol on the free movement of goods, humans and livestock, he was quoted as saying: “60 per cent of the people in West Africa are Nigerians. You need to know the number of Nigerians who cross the borders to other countries to look for livelihood.
“It is important for us to see how we can create a balance between the implementation of the protocol and the security of our borders.
“We have introduced the use of biometrics in other to ensure that we take account of every person that comes into Nigeria.”
The minister reportedly appealed to the media and citizens to look at the crisis between farmers and herdsmen as a national issue rather than one to which sentiments should be attached.
Danbazau also noted that the Nigeria Police Force was currently asking people to openly declare their arms.
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“We have given directive and this is why you see the police going from place to place asking people to declare their weapons.
“We have given this grace after which we will go out and condone suspected areas, get the weapons out and even prosecute those illegally handling them,” he said.
NAIJ.com earlier reported that President Muhammadu Buhari directed the military and the police to put mechanism in place to ensure that there is no reprisal attacks in Plateau state.
President Buhari, who was reacting to the killing of over 20 persons by suspected herdsmen, said the madness should not be allowed to continue.
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