- Nigeria's stability is being threatened by the conflict between farmers and herders according to a new report
- International Crisis Group (ICG) while making this claim disclosed that clashes are becoming more deadly than Boko Haram
- ICG also lamented the poor response to the crisis by the federal and affected state governments
The International Crisis Group (ICG) has claimed that violent conflicts between herders and farmers have escalated in recent years and are spreading to the southern part of the country and threatening the country’s security and stability.
The non-governmental organisation in a new report on Thursday, July 26, said that with an estimated death toll of approximately 2,500 people in 2016, these clashes are becoming as potentially dangerous as the Boko Haram insurgency in the north east.
ICG also claimed that the response to the crisis at both the federal and state levels has been poor.
Going further, the organisation said President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration and affected state governments need to work together, taking immediate steps to shore up security for herders and farmers, strengthening conflict-resolution mechanisms and initiating longer-term efforts to reform livestock management practices, address negative environmental trends and curb cross-border movements of both cattle rustlers and armed herders.
"The reaction from Nigeria’s federal and state authorities, so far, has been wanting. Aside from the recent push against Boko Haram and military operations against cattle rustling, they have done little else to address rural insecurity in the north.
"Federal security and law enforcement agencies have established neither early-warning nor rapid response mechanisms; they have not arrested and prosecuted perpetrators of violence or offered redress to victims. Until recently, officials have paid little if any attention to improving livestock management practices to minimise friction with agrarian communities.
"State governments’ responses overall have been short-sighted; most have failed to encourage community-level dialogue. As a result, both herders and farmers are taking matters into their own hands, further aggravating conflicts," the report stated
The report also blamed the worsening situation to "increasing availability of illicit firearms, both locally-produced and smuggled in from outside."
"Over the past five years, thousands have been killed; precise tallies are unavailable, but a survey of open source reports suggests fatalities may have reached an annual average of more than 2,000 from 2011 to 2016, for some years exceeding the toll from the Boko Haram insurgency."
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Meanwhile, NAIJ.com had reported that a group called for the probe of an alleged missing N100 billion slated for the establishment of ranches for herdsmen across Nigeria.
The Centre for Social Justice, Equity and Transparency (CESJET) petitioned the United States Embassy and the British High Commission over the continued crisis between herdsmen and farmers across Nigeria.
Nigerian herdsmen vs Nigerian farmers - on NAIJ.com TV