Ekiti State Governor, Mr Biodun Oyebanji, has reconstituted the state’s Farmers/Herders Peace Committee to mitigate clashes between farmers and herders and ensure a greater level of productivity.
Oyebanji speaking during the inauguration of the committee headed by the Special Adviser on Security Matters, Brig. Gen. Ebenezer Ogundana (retd) said, “Let me assure all citizens that the committee will be just and proactive in their conflict resolution assignments”.
The governor said that the crises between farmers and herders as well as other crimes in communities posed great threats to peace and food security in the state, urging the committee members to work in synergy with all stakeholders to ensure their cooperation.
He assured that Amotekun and Anti Grazing Corps in the state would be further strengthened to work with other security outfits for collaboration and effectiveness, most especially in the rural areas.
All relevant stakeholders including cattle breeders, herdsmen, farmers, security outfits, drivers unions, market women, traditional rulers, and youths, among others are duly represented in the committee to ensure fairness and equity.
The governor added, “We also have to deal with kidnappings many of which herders were suspected or indeed arrested as culprits. This trend has to be reversed so as not to create an atmosphere of chaos, vengeance, retribution, and lawlessness, hence, the need to reconstitute this committee to reposition it for a more defined direction in response to the urgent reality of today.
“For fairness and equity, all interested stakeholders are included in the committee including cattle breeders, herdsmen, farmers, security outfits, drivers’ unions, market women, traditional rulers, youths and others.
“It is our responsibility to sustain the confidence of our agricultural business owners and other stakeholders that their investments are secured in Ekiti.
The Commissioner for Agriculture and Food Security, Mr Ebenezer Boluwade, who emphasised the importance of farmers and herders to agricultural growth in any given society, expressed the hope that farm produce in Ekiti in the coming harvest season would be better as a result of the reconstituted committee.
The committee leader, Ogundana, said efforts were ongoing to ensure harmonious relationships among farmers, herders, security agencies, and communities in Ekiti while expressing the belief that the committee would help to address farmers/herders clashes in the state.