The Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki has banned night grazing and the carrying of arms by herdsmen in the state.
The spokesperson to the governor, Crusoe Osagie, who disclosed this in a statement on Thursday, said the governor also set up a seven-member committee in each of the local government areas in the state to check the incessant clashes between herdsmen and farmers.
The committees will include the chairpersons or heads of the LGAs, the Divisional Police Officers (DPOs), representatives of State Security Service and four representatives of communities.
Obaseki while holding a meeting with heads of Hausa/Fulani communities from the 18 LGAs in the state, said the state government would release the report of clashes between herdsmen and farmers in the state to the committees for review.
He said, “The committees will ensure the registration of all the Seriki Fulani in every community across all the local government areas and the Seriki Fulani will liaise with everyone rearing cattle in the area.
“Every three months, we will meet with representatives of the local government committees to review and examine the progress being made in resolving the herdsmen/farmers’ clashes in the state.
“A special team made up of the Police, Army, Civil Defence Corps and other security agencies in the state will carry out random patrols and search operations. Any herdsman found possessing firearms will be arrested and charged with illegal possession of firearms as a cattle rearer does not need an AK 47 to herd cattle.
“We will not accept anyone with firearms and anyone found with arms will face the law. We need information to succeed in this fight and information is vital to the police and other security agencies. We assure you of your safety.
“We have placed a ban on night herding; nobody should herd their cattle at night. We have also placed a ban on hunting activities by people from other states in the name of hunting.”
The Chairman of the Hausa Community in the state, Badamasi Saleh, called for protection of sources of security information as most members of the communities find it difficult to volunteer information to the security agencies due to the fear that their identities would not be protected.
Other members representing Hausa/Fulani community gave their support to the security agencies to fish out any member of their communities who committed any crime and appealed to the state government to provide necessary materials that will enhance the task of the monitoring committees in the various local governments.
The Commissioner of Police in the state, Johnson Kokumo, gave assurances that the persistent crisis between herdsmen and farmers in the state would be checked.