Arewa, O’dua, Ohanaeze, Niger Delta youths want Ruga settlement halted

The Arewa Consultative Youth Movement, Ohanaeze Youth Movement, Niger Delta Youth Council, Oduduwa Youth Council and other ethnic youth leaders yesterday urged the Federal Government to immediately halt implementation of Ruga cattle settlement policy.

Rising from a summit under the aegis of Ethnic Youth Leaders with Lawyers United for Democracy (LUD) and National Youth Council of Nigeria (NYCN), the groups said the call became necessary to enable wider consultations on certain issues as there was urgent need for clarification so as to find a lasting solution to lingering herders-farmers clashes in the country.

They also demanded the setting up of Electoral Offences Tribunal so that persons who breach of the nation’s electoral laws would be sanctioned to serve as deterrent to others.

In a communiqué after the two-day summit in Abuja, they expressed concern over the worsening security situation in the country.

“Boko Haram terrorism, herdsmen-farmers crisis, armed robbery, banditry and kidnappers are a cause of serious concern to citizens and the summit urges the Federal Government to tame the menace of these criminals immediately and bring the situation under control,” the groups said.

The communiqué was signed by Elochukwu Obi (LUD); Kabiru Yusuf (Arewa Consultative Youth Movement); Bello Aderemi (Oduduwa Youth Council); Uche Nnadi (Ohanaeze Youth Movement); Oladele John Nihi (NYCN); Meliga Godwin (Middle Belt Youth Council) and Bassey Henshaw (Niger Delta Council of Youths).

“The summit reviewed the controversy surrounding Federal Government’s RUGA Cattle Settlement policy and call for immediate halt in its implementation to enable wider consultations on certain issues as there is urgent need for clarification so as to find a lasting solution to herders-farmers clashes.

“It further resolved to propose conduct of all elections in one day, as a solution to manipulation of result sheets, ballot box snatching, voter suppression and other challenges in the electoral process.

“Due to noticeable lapses in our electoral laws, the Summit demands that the National Assembly, as a matter of urgency, transmit the Electoral Act Amendment Bill to the President for immediate signing into law.

“The Summit raises concern over security lapses and role of security agents in the 2019 elections and demands that investigations into some of the incidents of electoral malpractice in Lagos, Rivers and Kano should be carried and the culprits prosecuted to serve as a deterrent to others,” the communiqué added.

(The Guardian)