The forum noted that it had resolved to “urgently meet” to discuss the issue holistically and look at the sources of conflicts between herdsmen and the southern communities.
The NGF submitted that the current system of herding conducted mainly through open grazing was no longer sustainable in view of the growing urbanisation and large populations of the country.
The forum reached these conclusions during its emergency meeting held virtually to discuss issues affecting the region – a meeting presided over by its Chairman and Governor of Plateau State, Simon Lalong.
It added that it would aggressively sensitise herdsmen to the need to adopt new methods of herding by ranching or other acceptable modern methods.
The governors, therefore, appealed to the Nigerian government to support states with grants to directly undertake pilot projects of modern livestock production that will serve as a springboard and evidence for breaking resistance to the full implementation of new methods of livestock production.
According to Daily Trust, the forum expressed concerns over the tension generated by the eviction order issued to herdsmen in some parts of the country. It is heating the already fragile security atmosphere.
It also said there were already ‘threats of reprisals” which the governors are working assiduously to contain.
The governors called for restraint from leaders, including those in the Southern parts of the country where passions are high.
Similarly, they called on all the “citizens of the North to continue to live in peace with all Nigerians irrespective of their origins and backgrounds”.
Also, they urged political leaders to segregate between criminality and social groups in their domains with a view to treating criminals like criminals. They condemned every form of “criminality whether from herders, hunters, or farmers occupying forest reserves illegally”.
A resolution was also reached to engage elders and youths in a robust discussion in order to douse the tension in the North, and a four-man committee was set up in that respect to be headed by the Chairman of the Northern Governors Forum.