Governors of the South East rose from their meeting today, 31 August 2019, with a resolution to banish herdsmen who move about with arms from their region.
They specifically mentioned herders who wield AK-47 guns and cutlasses as the group that must be dislodged, effective immediately, and requested security agencies in the region to implement the ban.
Ebonyi State Governor, Chief Dave Umahi, who is chair of the SE Governors Forum, announced this as one of the measures to manage the serious security threat posed by armed herders who clash with farmers and community members as they lead their herds to pasture.
They also resolved to set up a joint air operations programme to flush out bandits from forests of the South East and to make this a continuous exercise until the region is rid of their menace.
The ultimate goal of recent measures taken by the South East Govenors Forum, according to Gov. Umahi, is to “restrain the herdsmen and their cattle from moving from place to place, and from community to community, as this has become a source of conflict with natives and farmers,” he said.
The Forum praised Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu for promptly creating forest guards which was a key decision from their last meeting.
In apparent response to accusations by Nnamdi Kanu, the Biafran separatist agitator, that South East governors colluded with the army to invade the region, Gov. Umahi said this:
“South East governors never invited the army nor were South East governors informed on any of the operations of Python Dance until the operations were already started in the states.”Gov. Dave Umahi
He also said the meeting resolved to write to President Muhammadu Buhari to seek an audience with him that will work to douse tension in the region.