The Northern Elders Forum has urged Fulani herders to leave the Southern part of the country if the safety of lives and properties are not guaranteed.
The Chairman of the forum, Prof. Ango Abdullahi, said this at a news conference in Abuja on Tuesday.
Abdullahi said there was a move by some trouble elements to engage herders with violence in the Southern part of the country.
Abdullahi said: “We have heard few hours ago that some violence had already started to manifest in some sections of the country against the herdsmen.
“We all know that this would affect peaceful coexistence in the communities where they have lived for many years.
“Now, certainly, we are worried about their safety, like we are worried about the safety of every Nigerian who decided to live wherever they want to.
“But then, if there is no certainty that their safety is guaranteed by the authorities that are immediately around them or by the authorities that have responsibility for the overall security of all Nigerians wherever they reside, we are certainly worried about their wellbeing.
“And I think particular attention should be paid to what is happening hour-to-hour, day-to-day basis.
“If it is indeed true that their safety is not guaranteed in the places where they are residing, we would rather have them back into areas where their safety is guaranteed, and they should be coming back as much as possible to the North.”
According to Abdullahi, the forum is making efforts to ensure that everything must be done to avoid escalation of violence that will lead to the breakdown of law and order in the country.
He recalled that the forum had met with Northern Governors Forum after which the forum decided to begin the consultation with Southern governors who have control and ownership of land, especially Fulani space settlements.
The chairman also urged the Federal Government to set up Judicial Panel of Enquiry to enable those who lost properties to come and make their claims, adding that compensation for the loss should not be one sided.