The National Secretary of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN), Othman Ngelzarma has dissociated the group from threats by a Fulani group to attack different locations in Delta State.
He also described the threat by the faceless group as an attempt to dent the image of Fulani herders in Southern Nigeria.
A militant group, Movement for the Emancipation and the Defence of the Niger Delta (MEND) had reacted to the threat saying it would retaliate by launching three rocket launchers and ballistic missiles at any facility of their choice in the North.
The Fulani group had threatened to invade and bomb the state capital, Asaba, and Agbor, headquarters of the Ika South local government area of the state. It gave Governor Okowa 72 hours to extract his position and support for the ban on open grazing.
Governors of states in the southern region of the country had met in Asaba in May 2021 over the growing epidemic of insecurity in the country, where they decided to place a ban on open grazing.
But reacting in an interview on Channels TV, Ngelzarma said the threat made by the group should not be taken seriously and was made by mischief-makers.
Ngelzarma maintained that the group that issued such threats is out to tarnish the image of pastoralists and Fulani people.
He, however, added that the resolution against open grazing is targeted at the Fulani staying in the southern part of the country.
“Such statements that come from faceless unknown groups shouldn’t be given any serious consideration. I believe this statement must be coming from mischief-makers, people who are out to tarnish the image of the Fulanis and pastoralists.
“It is because of such negative profiling by the media that makes us believe that the anti-open grazing laws being intended to be promulgated by the southern states are not laws stopping open grazing, but I believe these laws are laws against Fulanis living in the southern part of the country.
“The Northern governors must be up and doing and they must also begin to open discussions with their southern counterparts for them to put their heads together and come up with a solution that can work for both the north and the south,” he said.
“Respecting the fundamental human rights of the pastoralists as citizens. Their right to movement, their right to pray, their right to trade, their right to liberty.”