The dissolution of Nigeria will lead to an economic windfall for Fulani herdsmen, socio-cultural group Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore says.
Miyetti Allah spokesperson Saleh Alhassan said those who think the herdsmen would be at a disadvantage if Nigeria is divided are mistaken.
Alhassan spoke on the backdrop of the disaffection with Fulani herdsmen and settlers across Nigeria’s south where they are accused of farm vandalism, theft, kidnapping, rape and murder.
Anti-Fulani crusader Sunday Igboho wants members of the ethnic group expelled from Yoruba-dominated South-West. He issued them a notice to quit, and is canvassing for the creation of Oduduwa Republic. In the South-East, Biafra separatists echo similar sentiments. Militants have threatened to resume oil pipeline bombings in the South-South.
“Why that quit (notice) is not good is because it is going to have an implication,” Alhassan told Punch on Wednesday.
“If you have jobless youths in the North in the name of one coalition or the other issuing counter quit notices, are you not creating tension in the country? It is not good for the country.
“If we want to restructure the country or divide this country, we should sit down on a round table and say this is how we want to share this country, or this how we want to exist. It is as simple as that.
“Do you think if they divide Nigeria today, the herders will be at the disadvantage? No. If there is no oil at the centre, won’t the northern governors develop livestock? Who are the custodians of livestock, is it not the Fulani herders?
“So, what we are facing is what is called ‘resource curse’ –the oil we have has become a curse on us. If our governors were not collecting oil money, we would have flourishing ranches, flourishing grazing reserves, a lot of companies would be producing animal feeds and all the value chains would have been harnessed.
“But when governors wake up every morning to collect oil money at the centre and then they begin to negotiate for power-sharing here and there, this is what we have.”