Bala Mohammed, governor of Bauchi state, says herdsmen from other countries will benefit from the federal government’s National Livestock Transformation Plan (NLTP).
Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo launched the NLTP in Adamawa state on Tuesday.
The plan was developed by states and adopted by the national executive council (NEC) to address the farmer-herder crisis in the country.
Speaking on Channels Television on Monday, Mohammed said Fulani herdsmen are nomadic, moving across countries within the continent.
“I think there is a lot of mistrust and misconception as regards the Fulani man. The Fulani man is a global or African person. He moves from The Gambia to Senegal and his nationality is Fulani,” he said.
The governor, whose state is among those that will be part of the government’s initiative, said the Fulani are in many countries across Africa, sharing brotherhood which transcends boundaries.
He said it would be inappropriate to stop them from benefiting from the livestock plan just because they are not from Nigeria.
“As a person I may have my relations in Cameroon but they are also Fulani. I am a Fulani man from my maternal side, we will just have to take this as our own heritage, something that is African. So we cannot just close our borders and say the Fulani man is just a Nigerian,” he said.
“In most cases, the crisis is precipitated by those outside Nigeria. When there is a reprisal, it is not the Fulani man within Nigeria that causes it. It is that culture of getting revenge which is embedded in the traditional Fulani man that attracts reprisal.
“They are all Nigerians because their identity, their citizenship is Nigerian even though they have relatives from all over the world. So, presumably they are Nigerians because they move all over and have relations all over. That is why our population in Nigeria is fluid.”
Mohammed said Bauchi state is already accommodating herdsmen from other countries.
He said herdsmen from other countries such as Chad and Niger will be documented in order to get them involved in the livestock plan.
“We are already accommodating them. Do you delineate and really know who is not a Nigerian Fulani man?
“Yes (they will be documented). This will give Nigeria the opportunity of having proper documentation and knowing the demography because the Fulani man settles anywhere he can feed his cattle.”