THE government of Anambra State has ordered herders grazing their animals around university premises to vacate immediately or be arrested.
Herders have been operating in and around two main universities — the Nnamdi Azikiwe University and the Anambra State University, Igbariam in the state.
Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Security, Mr. Christopher Osita, announced this while unveiling decisions reached by Cattle Menace Committee after its meeting held at the Conference Hall, Government House, Awka.
He noted that it was regrettable that the herders were refusing to comply, even after repeated warnings that they should guard their cattle and avoid damage of property and farm crops.
Osita said, “This has prompted the marching order from the Cattle Menace Committee members inaugurated by government and chaired by the Commissioner of Police, CP John Abang.”
He stated the Seriki Fulani has been directed not to allow new herders into the state and to urge those already in the state to obey their host communities.
The Senior Special Assistant to the Governor promised to set up a committee that would assess compensation for damages inflicted on farmers, and cautioned against the presentation of outrageous claims.
He expressed worries over the destruction of life and property in various communities in the State by herders pointing that no compensation could equal human life.
The Committee then urged security operatives to expedite action in monitoring activities of these herders so as to stop further destruction, especially in this farming season.
Chairman of the Committee, CP Abang, represented by DCP Maiyaki Baba, promised that police would ensure the order was executed.
Seriki Fulani, Alhaji Gidado Sadikk, appealed to the government to be soft on law-abiding herders and allow them to be operating in the state.
He promised to communicate the vacation order to those still within university premises.
BY SUNNY A. DAVID