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Southern leaders hold high-profile meeting, proffer way forward for Nigeria

Southern leaders hold high-profile meeting, proffer way forward for Nigeria

- Leaders from the southern part of the country and the middle-belt held a meeting to address issues affecting the country

- They resolved that Nigeria needed to be restructured for it to develop

- They described killer Fulani herdsmen as another version of Boko Haram

Leaders from the south-west, south-east, middle belt and the south-south have called for devolution of the current Nigeria structure that has depended on oil and called for true diversification.

The Punch reports that the leaders in a consultative meeting held in Abuja also called on the government to address the killer herdsmen menace describing them as another form of Boko Haram terrorism.

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Chief Edwin Clark led the south-south delegation; Chief Ayo Adebanjo led the south-west delegation; Gen. Ike Nwachukwu led the south-east delegation while Prof. Jerry Gana, Air Commodore Dan Suleiman, former Governor Idris Wada and Gen. David Jemibewon (retd.) led the middle belt delegation.

Also present were Chief Olu Falae, Prof. Banji Akintoye, Chief Albert Horsefall, Chief Guy Ikoku, Basil Paul and Bala Kakaya.

They agreed that “there was a little difference between Fulani herdsmen and Boko Haram” saying while the latter attacked in the north, the former unleashed terror in the middle belt and the south.

They expressed support for One Nigeria insisting that the progress and security of the nation was important.

Yinka Odumakin said: “We have resolved to put an end to these herdsmen immediately and bring an end to this organised terror being unleashed on the South and Middle Belt states.”

The delegate insisted that the way forward for the country.

Part of the communique read: “As a logical derivative, we must work out a new fiscal formula that will move Nigeria away from the current overdependence on oil and gas revenue to a diversified economy where all federating units are encouraged to develop their abundant natural and human resources for regional and national development.

“The federating units shall remit an agreed percentage of their revenue to the federation account.”

They also condemned what they described as indiscriminate appointments saying Nigeria was a secular state.

“Therefore, we ask the Federal Government to immediately review the discriminatory appointments into key offices of government and public service and comply with Section 14 of the 1999 Constitution.”

“State governments are also called upon to outlaw open grazing in favour of organised ranching.”

NAIJ.com had reported that four Fulani herdsmen were reportedly killed by unknown gunmen in Kajuru local government of Kaduna state.

The death of the four herdsmen was confirmed by the national secretary of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria, Abdullahi Ibrahim on Saturday, July 15.

According to Ibrahim, the incident follows an abduction of two Fulani indigenes in the area, Channels TV reports.

Watch a NAIJ.com TV video below focusing on the debate between restructuring of Nigeria or break-up.

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