At least 10,000 herdsmen have been killed and another two million displaced across the country in the past seven years, Miyetti Allah, Fulani Sociocultural Association in Nigeria has said.
The cultural group said from 2015 to date many herders have faced myriads of untimely deaths, with more than four million animals being rustled or killed.
WikkiTimes gathered that Fulani from 16 West African countries gathered in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, on Thursday to discuss issues relating to insecurity.
Held at Transcorp Hilton Hotel with the theme “The Future of Fulani Pastoralists in the country”, the conference was the First Interactive Policy Dialogue and Cultural Festival organised by the group that attracted thousands from within and abroad.
Miyetti Allah alleged that apart from the herder/farmer clashes, the activities of the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra IPOB/ Eastern Security Network ESN are also responsible for making the situation deteriorate.
“The activities of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) / Eastern Security Network (ESN) and the Volunteers have further exacerbated the situation and posed a threat to Nigeria’s national security.”
In Nigeria, herders which are mostly Fulanis have been stereotyped as committing robberies and kidnappings, especially in the northwestern states of Nigeria, a claim denied by tribal leaders and groups.
Clashes between herders and local farmers in several communities in Nigeria have increased in recent years. One report put the number of deaths at more than 3,641 between 2016 and 2018, stating that over 1,300 deaths were recorded in the first half of 2018. Another report revealed that about 62,000 people were displaced over the two years from 2015 to 2017.
Herder–farmer conflicts in Nigeria are socio-ethnic disputes over land resources across the states between mostly Fulani herders and mostly non-Fulani farmers. More recently, it has deteriorated into attacks on farmers by the herdsmen and also vice versa.