Gombe State deputy governor, Dr. Manassah Daniel Jatau, has said that a fair and judicious definition of boundaries would reduce frictions that often result in conflicts among border communities.
The deputy governor stated this while addressing a joint meeting of the National Boundary Commission and Gombe State Boundary Committee on the Gombe-Bauchi boundary held at the deputy governor’s office in Gombe.
Jatau who is also the chairman of the state’s boundary committee, stressed that amicable definition of boundaries would as well reduce enmity and hatred resulting in clashes among border communities, which often leads to loss of lives and properties.
He said, save for the timely intervention of traditional rulers, most of the disagreements amongst the border communities could have been devastating. He thereby called on NBC to speed up the process of demarcation to forestall ugly situations.
He also enjoined the Commission to be fair in their responsibility using the available natural boundaries, pointing out that, where there are none, historical artifacts and backgrounds should be used.
The deputy governor, however, assured that Gombe State government would readily support the commission by providing all the necessary assistance needed towards successful completion of its assignment.
In his remarks, the director-general, National Boundary Commission, Adamu Adaji, said, the meeting between the Commission and the Gombe State Boundary Committee was to discuss vital issues on demarcation of Gombe- Bauchi boundary.
The DG recalled that the creation of Gombe State from Bauchi State transformed inter local government’s boundaries to interstate boundaries.
But, according to him, the instruments used in determining boundaries then were those inherited from the colonial period which were vague and ambiguous.
Adaji however commended the two states for taking the challenge to recognise that they are one drawing their attention to the fact that definition of boundaries are not meant to sever relationships nor to deny owners of their farm lands but to determine administrative limits of each state government.
He further said the boundaries have been defined using the median line, noting that major issues left to be discussed are the sensitisation of border communities on the need to accept that boundary definition is not war, nor, intended to prevent interactions and relationships.
Other issues of discourse include, the exact period of demarcation, involvement of the State Boundary Committee, and provision of security among others.