By Praise Necherem
The Federal government’s non-challant attitude towards cattle rustling, especially failure to stop constant encroachment on farmlands is responsible for the frequent bloody clashes between farmers and herdsmen across the country.
The Anglican Bishop of Ihiala Diocese, Anambra State, Rt. Rev. Prof. Israel ‘Kelue Okoye, who made assertion, stressed that government’s attitude towards the menace have encouraged herdsmen to employ various instruments of violence to intimidate farmers.
Speaking after the first session of the third synod of the diocese at the Cathedral Church of St. Silas, Ihiala, Okoye appealed to the federal government to take decisive actions against the rampaging herdsmen in the interest of Nigerian farmers.
“Because the herdsmen are not often arrested and treated for their lawlessness, they moved a step further by acquiring guns which they employ in terrorising not only farmers, but also families living in the vicinities they invade, purportedly in search of grazing fields.
‘’Any nation that pampers evil supervises its own liquidation. Any nation that would not deal decisively against the invasion and destruction of its farmlands and products, and the sanctity of the life of its citizens, has programmed itself for annihilation.
“While the band of militants who deceitfully parade themselves as herdsmen are allowed to unleash havoc on people, there is no better time to act than now, and let this menace be curbed.
“Responsible herdsmen should be encouraged to establish ranches for their cattle. Any business that is transacted in violation of other people’s business rights is an economic virus. I doubt if Nigeria can afford it,” he said.