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Pulaku Initiative to end farmer-herder Crisis

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By Abiodun Okunloye

An essential set of ethical principles for the Fulani community was initiated.

The initiation of the Pulaku Initiative by the Federal Government marks the commencement of a resettlement program to address the underlying factors behind the conflicts between farmers and herders in various regions of the nation. Pulaku, often referred to as the distinctive Fulani code of conduct, embodies an essential set of cultural and ethical principles specific to the Fulani community. According to Stanley Nkwocha, the Senior Special Assistant on Media and Communications to the Vice President, the program will first focus on tackling the issues that arise from conflicts between farmers and herders in seven specific states: Sokoto, Benue, Zamfara, Katsina, Kebbi, Niger, and Kaduna State.

Also, the inauguration of the implementation committee for the Pulaku Initiative marks the commencement of the plan proposed by Vice President Kashim Shettima and the Tinubu administration. This long-awaited announcement aims to confront various issues faced by Nigerian citizens, primarily those residing in the northern region, such as insurgency and poverty. During a condolence visit to the Galadanci and Mangal families in Kano and Katsina on July 16, 2023, Shettima told reporters that relying solely on military operations would not solve the security crisis in the Northwest of Nigeria. Instead, a combination of both active and non-active methods must be employed to bring peace to this troubled region.

Urgency is needed to address the threat in Nigeria’s framework.

He said that unless they desire to partake in a never-ending conflict of exhaustion, the crisis in the northwest cannot be resolved through military means. He firmly believed that a solution must involve both physical and non-physical actions. About eight months earlier, the Vice President established a steering committee tasked with supervising the execution of the initiative. During the commencement ceremony of the implementation committee in Abuja’s Presidential Villa, the VP explained that the choice of these specific states was deliberate and strategic. This selection aims to create a series of consequential events that would rejuvenate communities and establish a solid foundation for a more unified and comprehensive Nigeria.

However, the FG pledged to bring a renewed sense of life to communities affected by conflict by initiating the construction of houses, roads, schools, and necessary facilities. As a result, the VP insists that this project should be viewed as an urgent response to the massive challenge threatening Nigeria’s framework. It proves President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s commitment to fulfilling his promises. Shettima reassured that their commitment to promoting sustainable development and enhancing the well-being of every individual is conveyed through this strategy. He reassured the people that the undertaking would tackle a long-standing predicament that had endured throughout numerous eras and required their joint determination, utmost fairness, and unwavering empathy.

State Governor anticipates the support for their communities.

It is not merely a reaction but rather an urgent appeal for active engagement. He further emphasised their presence was crucial as all their initiatives and policies would stumble unless they addressed the underlying dysfunctions they had inherited. He characterised the Pulaku resettlement as a nationwide dedication to tackle an issue that has fuelled suspicion and disputes among various communities and throughout the federation. The Pulaku initiative serves as a practical response to a common challenge without any intention to favour specific groups or regions. It is essential to disregard any division caused by regional differences in order to embrace this non-violent approach fully.

Uba Sani, the Governor of Kaduna State, disclosed the official commencement date during his conversation with reporters. This initiative is set to kick off within the next two weeks following the gathering. Residential structures, educational institutions, and medical facilities will be constructed alongside assistance provisions for those impacted by the prevailing insecurity. Also, in a discussion with State House Correspondents, Hyacinth Alia, the Governor of Benue State, expressed his anticipation for substantial assistance to farmers in his region and a decrease in the conflicts between farmers and herders. According to his statement, the farmers would receive extensive support, ensuring their confidence in the security measures implemented by the FG.

Related Article: Speaker seeks solution to farmer-herder clash

Lastly, they have found peace at last. However, once they fully embrace agricultural investment, as the program aims to do, their existing insecurities will be significantly reduced. Furthermore, those uprooted will finally have a place they can call their own. Also, Minister Ahmed Dangiwa, the head of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, leads the committee composed of state governors that will benefit from its initiatives. The committee includes Sen. Abubakar Kyari, Minister for Agriculture and Food Security, along with representatives from the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, the Bureau of Public Procurement, Dangote Group, BUA Group, and the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA).

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