The Delta State government has reiterated its resolve to ensure that criminal elements masquerading as herdsmen in the state are subjected to tougher punishment, as well as no room for them to kill its citizens wantonly.
Chief Cassidy Iloba, Senior Special Assistant to Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa who spoke to journalists yesterday in Asaba confirmed that the state government had concluded plans to ensure Deltans are not molested or killed by these criminal elements who go about as herdsmen, adding that even though the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria allows for citizens to ply their trade in any part of the country, it does not make provision for those conducting their businesses to resort to wanton harassment, destruction of properties including killing of bona fide citizens in the state under the guise of grazing.
Chief Iloba however called on aggrieved persons affected by the activities of herdsmen in the state to channel their grievances to the Cattle Rearers’ Association office in Agbor or through appropriate security agencies.
Expectedly, in the wake of alleged killings in Ndokwa communities and Abraka communities as well as raping house wives in their farm lands, the state government through collaborative efforts of the non-indigenes, especially the Hausa community has opened and commissioned the Cattle Rearers Association office in Agbor where aggrieved persons can lodge their complains but the Special Assistant to the governor on non-indigenes, Usman Muktar told journalist that agreement had been reached with the operating herdsmen in the state to be law abiding as Governor Ifeanyi Okowa had been proactive in putting machineries in place to ensure the safety of law abiding herdsmen/ cattle rearers in the state.
He noted that despite some few reported clashes between the herdsmen and farmers, and unfortunate deaths, the relationship between herders and sedentary farming communities had been cordial in Delta state and insisted on the need for peaceful co-existence between the farmers and the herdsmen.
Meanwhile, a prominent Isoko son Jude Ogbemi has stressed the need for all Isoko sons and daughters to come together with a view to reviewing their development strategy which he said that the late elders statesman Chief James Otobo fought hard to create and sustained before he died.
Ogbemi who spoke to journalist at the weekend in Otor-ogho Oweh kingdom, Isoko south local government of the state noted that the time has come for committed Isoko indigenes to come out to liberate from its level of development to its envisioned height.
According to him” the Isoko nation is one of the oil producing nations in the oil rich Niger- Delta, it is in fact on record that oil was first discovered in Uzere in Isoko south before Oloibiri in Bayelsa state, since the discovery of oil in commercial quantity in Isoko nation, the nation had been sidelined into poverty, the burning of natural gas did not help the matters as gas flaring destroyed the natural environment , this was the scenario when Chief James Otobo came into the scene when Isoko nation was part of Urhobo, Isoko people have sine known better, political leadership or election is one of the areas that can develop a nation faster.
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