The lingering tension between Fulani herdsmen and the farmers over their co-existence in Kogi State was yesterday assuaged, as Governor Yahaya Bello, brokered peace with the two rival groups.
The governor, who charged the people of the state to always embrace dialogue and high level of understanding between the two groups in order to live peacefully and harmoniously, said that his administration would always mediate in any misunderstanding that might arise. While uniting the two groups at a security summit for stakeholders in the state, the governor noted that through dialogue the government and its citizens could collectively achieve desired goals. He, however, warned that the use of foul languages should always be avoided as it could only cause more harm than good to the people.
The governor, who added that the state was an epitome of peace in the country, however, pointed out that no tribe or people in the country had monopoly of sending away or preventing any one from doing business in any part of the country. “I am appealing to the people of the state irrespective of their tribes and religion to tolerate one another in order to live a peaceful life, where business will continue to thrive. If the government gets it right in its agenda, the glory will go to the people,” Bello said.
o the Special Adviser to the Governor on Security, Navy Commander Jerry Omadara (rtd), described the security summit as another opportunity for the state to chart a way forward in sustaining the existing peace in Kogi State. Omadara urged the Fulani resident in the state to check themselves and fish out the bad eggs among them, adding that without peace there can never be a robust economic growth in the state.
The Chief of Staff to the Governor, Mr. Edward Onoja, while presenting the framework for security resolution, hinted that there must be a paradigm shift in the manner with which the people handle issues of security in the state.
Onoja, who stressed the need to always discuss and dialogue so as to safeguard human life, lamented that the wanton loss of lives and property in some states of the federation as a result of herdsmen and farmers clashes, was not healthy for the country. He commended Governor Bello, who within 24 months in the saddle of leadership of the state was able to bring the rising insecurity challenge in the state to the barest minimum.