Governor Dave Umahi of Ebonyi State in the South East
THE South-East Governors’ Forum (SEGF) has dismissed any suggestion that the zone will accommodate any of the plots of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) to establish a presence either through the proposal vigilance groups, cattle ranch or cattle colony.
The Chairman of the SEGF and Ebonyi State Governor Dave Umahi, in a statement Monday, in Abakaliki by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Emmanuel Uzor described a strange the allegation that the states governors would allow MACBAN to form vigilance group in the zone.
He insisted that the South-East would not allow any Miyetti vigilante in any part of the zone, neither would it allow any cattle ranch or cattle colony in the zone. MACBAN’s proposal is to assist leaders in the zone curtail menace of crime and criminal activities in the area with their vigilance team.
According to Umahi, “all South-East governors are together in this position,” while he denied ever being ready to allow such suggestions come to fruition in the zone.
In the statement, he stated that: “I find it extremely strange for anybody to think that non locals in any part of the country including South-East can be allowed to form a vigilance outfit.
“The Miyetti Allah group may have made that suggestion, which I believe will never mean to form a vigilance group in the South East. No governor will allow that.
“South-East governors have their vigilance groups working with security agencies; any such demand by Miyetti is a joke and not acceptable.
“Governors of the zone are doing their best and we have no problems receiving insults from our people, it is the price of leadership.
“The important thing to us is the safety and well-being of our people. The Oodua People’s Congress (OPC) and other pressure groups may not have found it fashionable to insult their leaders even when their leaders may not be saints.”
Umahi further disclosed that his task was not to insult others but “to develop Ebonyi, contribute in rebuilding South-East and Nigeria. Have we been fairly treated? No. Can we solve the problem by hate speeches? For me, the answer is no.”
Noting that the governors do not need hate speeches as a strategy to solve problems, Umahi insisted that people of the zone must live peacefully with herdsmen that do not destroy their farm lands especially those “had lived peacefully with the people.”