Miyetti Allah has spoken out in response to the governor of Anambra State, Willie Obiano, issuing a new order.
The Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) has backed Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra State over a recent order he issued to security operatives.
Obiano ordered security operatives to label herders wielding an AK-47 as criminals.
Obiano made the remarks at the Prof Dora Akunyili Women’s Development Center in Awka on Tuesday.
He stated that such individuals would not be permitted to return to Anambra State.
The Governor reacted after the traditional rulers complained to the Inspector General of Police, Abubakar Adamu, about herdsmen taking over their farmlands with AK 47s and randomly rapping women.
After the head count his administration was planning on them, Obiano immediately ordered that itinerant herdsmen carrying AK 47 guns be treated as criminals in Anambra State.
However, Alhaji Gidado Sidikki, the Southeast Chairman of Miyetti Allah, responded on Thursday, first debunking the claim that the group was involved in the food blockade to southern Nigeria from the north.
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Sidikki told reporters in Awka that Obiano’s action was in line with an existing agreement between the governors of the South East and MACBAN that any herder found in possession of a gun should be treated as a criminal.
He claimed that under his supervision, the leadership of Miyetti Allah in the South East zone always screened any Cattle herder who entered the region before allowing him to graze.
“Despite some isolated cases of misunderstanding, which he said was normal in every human existence,” he said, “my members have had a good relationship with their host communities.”
“Our interest in the zone was purely economic; no herder wants to be in a land dispute with members of their host communities.”
As a result, he urged the host communities not to use the order as an excuse to kill and destroy the property of law-abiding Fulani herders in the area.
Sidikki went on to say that the ban on foods from the north to the south was the result of the Amalgamated Union of Food and Cattle Dealers of Nigeria, not Miyetti Allah.
He claimed that the union had previously written a letter to Miyetti Allah informing them that they would stage a protest to protest the ongoing killings and destruction of their members’ property across the country.
“As a result, the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association has no involvement in the food blockade from North to South Nigeria,” he stated.
Meanwhile, MACBAN praised Southeast state governments for securing the region against banditry.
According to the group, more needs to be done to ensure that law-abiding citizens, including herders, are free to conduct their businesses without interference of any kind in order to improve the lives of all Nigerians.
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