The leadership of Fulani herders in Taraba State has pledged to weed out criminal elements among them within five months.
The leadership of the herders made the promise after the Emir of Muri, Alh. Abbas Tafida, issued 30 days ultimatum for herders terrorizing the state to vacate the forest or be forced to do so.
However, the leadership of the herders, comprised of Ardos and Fulani community leaders drawn from 14 out the 16 local government areas of the State, visited the Emir yesterday at his palace to clarify the issue.
They told the Emir that they have done series of meetings and vowed to crush the criminal elements among their groups.
The herders, led by the State Chairman of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association, Sahabi Mahmud, said they agreed not to harbour criminals even if they are their biological children.
The herders said they have also sworn to an oath to expose the sponsors of Fulani terrorists no matter their standing in society and pleaded with the Emir to accept their pledge and give them time to fulfill their promises.
The Miyetti Allah Chairman read out the pledge, which was contained in a communique issued after a stakeholders’ meeting that lasted for several hours.
The meeting was attended by the harders and their Ardos and Jauros across the State as well as the Security Adviser to Gov. Darius Ishaku, Col. Angyo Agbu (rtd)
The harders maintained that the task of carrying out the assignment was very huge, but absolutely necessary, in order to sanitize the Fulani herdsmen and restore their damaged image caused by the criminal activities of a few of them.
In his response, the Emir of Muri, Alh. Abbas Tafida, said the marching orders he gave during recent Eid-el-Kabir celebrations were targeted at criminal elements among the herdsmen.
Tafida said it became necessary for him to issue such orders in view of the increasing rate of kidnapping being committed by suspected Fulani herdsmen.
He lamented that the image of the Fulani as a race was endangered by the criminal activities of a few among them whom he alleged were involved in kidnapping and other criminals activities.
He also cited Modibbo Buba Yero, the founder of the Muri Emirate, as an exemplary leader of Fulani that fought injustice. “Those were role models of the Fulani, who never associated themselves with shame and who distanced their ethnic groups from crime and criminality”, he added.
He commended the leadership of the Fulani for taking the bold steps to weed out criminals amongst them.
He, however, directed that a list of those that repented and those that refused to repent be submitted to him when the sorting out of the task was completed.