The Chairman, Senate Committee on Army, Ali Ndume, has disagreed with the consensus of the Southern Governors to outlaw open grazing as a means of redressing insecurity in the region.
Ripples Nigeria had reported that the Southern Governors Forum (SGF), at its meeting held in Asaba, Delta State Capital, on Tuesday, unanimously prohibited open grazing in the region in order to checkmate herders-farmers clashes.
Nonetheless, Ndume opined during a news conference in Abuja that the security issues plaguing the country are not about open grazing.
According to the lawmaker, every region has its unique challenges which must be tackled on its basis and antecedents.
The lawmaker said: “The governors are deviating from the matter. The problem is not about open grazing. The problem is security. Most of the insecurity problems confronting Nigeria is not in the bush.
“We have four different types of security challenges. We have the insurgency in the North East, IPOB through the Eastern Security Network is creating insecurity in the South East, there is banditry in the North West.
“It is only in the North Central that we have issues of farmers-herders clashes. There is less problem in the South–West except for the clashes between the herdsmen and the farmers and the agitators for the Yoruba nation.
“Similarly, in the South-South, they are trying to instigate the avengers but so far the area is peaceful. The issue of insecurity is unique to each zone.”
In order to ensure the battle is won, Ndume urged the Federal Government to equip the military with the requisite weaponry.
He also said salaries and allowances of military personnel ought to be paid in time.
“That means even if they will stop paying us and use the money to tackle security. Is it not when you are secure that you talk of other things? It is not only the politicians but everybody.
“If you know that you cannot move out of your house and they say sacrifice your salary, won’t you do it? Many people are working from home, yet they are being paid.
“They should stop paying salaries and address the whole issue of insecurity. If you don’t have money, stop paying salaries and allowances and use the money to provide security.
“If you are borrowing money to provide infrastructure, why can’t we borrow money to protect our people?” Ndume said.