The Attorney-General and Minister for Justice, Abubakar Malami SAN was blasted for comparing Fulani herdsmen with spare parts dealers resident in the north. He made this comparison known to the public on Channels Television’s ‘Politics Today’ anchored by Seun Okinbaloye. He said “It is as good as saying, perhaps, maybe, the northern governors coming together to say they prohibit spare parts trading in the north.
“Does it hold water? Does it hold water for a northern governor to come and state expressly that he now prohibits spare parts trading in the north?”
The Southern Governors’ Forum, the Ohanaeze Ndigbo, the Senate spokesman, Ajibola Basiru and others, who criticised the AGF, said his comment fell short of what Nigerians expected from the chief law officer of the country.
Southern Governors last week in Asaba resolved to ban open grazing as the permanent solution to the farmers/herdsmen clashes in the South.
Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Rotimi Akeredolu said that the ban has come to stay as it is in the best interest of the southerners. He said: “It is most unfortunate that the AGF is unable to distill issues as expected of a senior advocate. Nothing can be more disconcerting. This outburst should, ordinarily, not elicit response from reasonable people who know the distinction between a legitimate business that is not in any way injurious and a certain predilection for anarchy. Clinging to an anachronistic model of animal husbandry, which is evidently injurious to harmonious relationship between the herders and the farmers as well as the local populace, is wicked and arrogant.
“Comparing this anachronism, which has led to loss of lives, farmlands and property, and engendered untold hardship on the host communities, with buying and selling of auto parts is not only strange, it, annoyingly, betrays a terrible mindset. The decision to ban open grazing stays and it will be enforced with vigour.”
The Igbo socio-cultural group, Ohanaeze Ndigbo criticized Malami for making the statement when it said: “Malami had also condemned the Amotekun security outfit by the South-West and so on. Malami knows that there has never been a report of a clash between the Southern motor spare parts sellers and the indigenous northerners.
“The motor spare parts sellers render their services to the populace from shops or sheds and are in no way comparable to the Fulani herders who invade farmlands, destroy crops, debauch women, maim, abduct and kill.”
The Spokesman of the Senate, Senator Ajibola Basiru called on President Muhammadu Buhari to fire him for making the incendiary statement.