Tunde Opalana and Kamarudeen Ogundele, Abuja
Finding lasting solution to herders/farmers incessant clashes in southern part of the country will receive urgent parliamentary attention as the Senate resumes plenary today, Leader of the Senate, Senator Yahaya Abdulllahi has assured.
This is with the assurance that recent ethnic wrangling over activities of Fulani herdsmen in both Ondo and Oyo states will be thoroughly deliberated upon to avert crises that have started brewing due to ethno – religion attachments to the issue.
He added that interventions from all fronts against the crises are urgently required as ethnic entrepreneurs are trying to take advantage of the ugly situation.
Setting the agenda on Monday during a session with journalists in Abuja, Senator Yahaya Abdulllahi also disclosed that the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs will determine whether the immediate Service Chiefs are suitable for confirmation as non – career Ambassadors when it considers President Muhammadu Buhari’s request for confirmation of their nomination.
Senator Abdullahi (APC Kebbi North), disclosed that a motion for the debate on farmers/ herders clashes has already been prepared by the Deputy Senate Leader, Senator Robert Ajayi Boroffice (APC Ondo North).
The Leader said “the Senate is disturbed that such crises in addition to armed banditry and Boko Haram insurgency, remain unabated and there can’t be development where there is no peace, the very reason, state actors at the grassroots need to be more involved in stopping them.
“With some kind of ethnic colouration of the Herders / Farmers clashes, urgent attentions are required at various levels of government to prevent them from further escalation.
“These are kind of crises that must be addressed promptly and squarely in preventing ethnic entrepreneurs from hijacking the whole situation and putting the country in danger.
“There are existential issues that have set communities that have hitherto lived together peacefully, against each other either for political advantage or political matters.
“I think these are issues that should be resolved at the local level either through dialogue anchored on the spirit of give and take.
“Whatever crises that are involved should be resolved by political leaders at appropriate levels be it, at the National Assembly, at the level of the Governors, local Government and even councillorship level where state actors are expected to sit down with their people so that a lot of these issues can be articulated and addressed by the local population.
“Infact, this is what the Governors at their levels should do and not always running to the presidency, to solve one dispute here and there.
“This is a federation and we are all politically responsible leaders. I can assure you that in no distant time, these inter- communal conflagrations would be resolved.
“So, hopefully Tuesday or Wednesday this week, a general motion that will be sponsored by the deputy Senate leader, Ajayi Borroficce, will be debated on the floor of the Senate.”
Speaking on the fate of the former Service Chiefs to be confirmed as Ambassadorial nominees, the leader said: “Communications for the confirmation would be read hopefully by the Senate president tomorrow and whatever happens we will pass it on to the committee on foreign affairs and then the committee on foreign affairs will now do its deliberation.
“I am not one under this situation to preempt whatever the committee is going to decide because the committee is made up of several responsible and experienced senators who have also been ambassadors themselves so they will know exactly what are required for people to be appointed as ambassadors to represent the country in whatever country.
“As leader of the Senate this will be brought to the floor of the Senate. The committee will do its work and after that they will bring the report to the Senate. I am sure all the questions will not escape the committee.
“I don’t want to pre -empt them. Let them do what is just and right and let them apply all the criteria for appointment of ambassadors for the country which will be the basis of determining the fate of the nominees.”