By Emmanuel Addeh
There was tension in Bayelsa state on Saturday over alleged herdsmen’s attacks on farmers in the state.
To douse the growing anger, an advocacy group, the Nigeria Reconciliation and Stability Project of the British Council and the Bayelsa State Peace and Conflict Management Alliance met on Saturday with Fulani herdsmen and farmers in the state.
Specifically, the cattle breeders were said to have attacked farmers in Biogbolo, Yenuzie-Epie, Okutukutu and Epie in Yenagoa Local Government Area of the state.
A farmer and victim of the herders’ attack, Mrs Margaret Samuel, said during the attack, she was given a knife cut on her hand.
She urged the government to protect the farmers against cruel attacks by Fulani herdsmen through an enabling law.
“My hands were nearly cut off by the herdsmen during a recent attack. The attack was cruel and it must not be allowed to continue.
” I was suprised when I saw a group of herdsmen in my farm on that fateful day and before I could say a word, they started beating me,” Samuel alleged.
But one of the herdsmen, Suleman Abubakar, said that those fueling the attack were not herdsmen based in Bayelsa.
Abubakar said, “I do not know where the attacks are coming from because I have never been part of it.
”I move my cows from place to place and do not find people’s trouble. I can tell you emphatically that we (herdsmen) in Bayelsa don’t know who is causing the problem in the state.
“Those causing the trouble in Bayelsa are not herdsmen based here. We suggest that the relevant authorities should carry out more investigation to unravel those behind the dastardly act.”
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