— 2mins read
In an interview with Punch Newspapers, Alhassan said herdsmen were being marginalised in the country and that Buhari as President had not in any way made their lives better.
His statement is coming on the heels of the controversy generated by Rotimi Akeredolu, Ondo State governor, who ordered herders to vacate the state forest reserves over rising insecurity in the state.
Also, Sunday Adeniyi Adeyemo, a Yoruba youth leader, also known as Sunday Igboho, had issued an ultimatum giving herdsmen seven days to leave Igangan, Ibarapa North Local Government Area of Oyo State following cases of increased kidnapping and killings by suspected Fulani herdsmen in the area.
On Friday, he reportedly stormed the Fulani settlement in the town to eject the Seriki Fulani, Salihu Abdukadir, and other herdsmen accused of fuelling insecurity in the area.
Alhassan said, “The mistake people make is that they think when they put pressure on herders they are getting at President (Muhammadu) Buhari. Buhari has no relationship with the herders. That is the truth. When people say he is our grand patron, was Jonathan from the South-South not our grand patron?”
“If the President is a Fulani, it doesn’t in any way affect the life of a herder. In fact, they are worse off under Buhari. What are they benefitting? They don’t access any government facility or social amenity, yet they are responsible for the bulk of animal protein we produce in this country. I think it’s deliberate for people to think otherwise.”
“Buhari has not done anything for us other than creating enemies for us. Herders are being chased around. Let us look at the larger picture and not allow enemies penetrate us. If Buhari loves the herders, he would have created the grazing reserves for them.”
Herdsmen in 10 years, killed 3652 people in 478 attacks
According to data obtained from Nigerian Security Tracker (NST), between 2012 and 2021, Fulani herdsmen conducted 478 attacks and killed 3,652 people in Nigeria.
The data captures the yearly number of attacks and deaths by Herdsmen across the country from 2012 to January 2021.
NST, which relies on data from media reports and verified independently by a team of researchers, shows attacks and killings orchestrated by herdsmen.
A breakdown analysis of the data indicates that in 2016, there were 56 attacks resulting in the killing of 799 people, while in 2018, the attacks rose to 147 and resulted in a bloodbath that caused 1,196 deaths.
In 2020, according to the data, there were 74 attacks, and 248 people killed.
Deaths per year, however, showed that 7 attacks with 43 deaths were recorded in 2012. In 2013, the number of attacks rose to 17 with 149 deaths. The following year, specifically in 2014, it further rose to 32 attacks with 374 deaths, while in 2015 it dropped to 14 attacks with 100 deaths.
In 2016, the number of casualties rose 56 attacks with 799 deaths. The following year, specifically in 2017, it declined to 55 attacks with 483 deaths, while in 2018, 147 attacks and 1,196 deaths were recorded. in 2019, attacks dropped to 71 with 255 deaths. In 2020, there were 74 attacks and 248 reported deaths.
As of January 2021, five attacks have been recorded with five reported deaths.