All States must have Ruga – Matawalle says after chat with Buhari..

He spoke to reporters after a closed door meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari.

Matawalle said a presidential intervention was underway “to sustain the peace Zamfara is now enjoying’’.

He added that solution to the recurring violence between farmers and herders “was ruga”.

All state governments must brace up and construct grazing grounds, popularly called Ruga, so as to find a lasting solution to clashes between herdsmen and farmers across the country,” he said.

Matawalle expressed confidence that the provision of the grazing grounds will discourage herdsmen’s desire for relocation.

“In Zamfara, we are constructing Ruga for them. If we allow them to keep moving around, migrating from one State to another, we cannot bring this issue to an end,” he stated.

NGF Chairman and Ekiti Governor, Kayode Fayemi, briefed State House correspondents after an emergency meeting at the State House Banquet Hall.

Fayemi said the governors reviewed farmers/herders conflict, banditry, kidnapping, militancy, sea piracy, cultism, youth protests, insurgency, among others.

He said the NGF condemned ethnic profiling of crime and criminality in the country.

Fayemi disclosed that governors restated commitment to the protection of lives and property and sympathize with those who are bereaved.

“The Governors Forum has gone ahead also to provide some financial support to victims of the conflict experienced in Oyo and Ogun States where our delegation visited last week.

“Nigerian governors also said in very clear terms, that crime and criminality should comprehensively be prosecuted wherever they may occur without ethnic, religious or any other colouration.

“Governors are totally opposed to ethnic profiling of crime; knowing what has transpired in other parts of the world,’’ he said.

On the National Livestock Transformation Plan (NLTP), the forum agreed that the traditional method of grazing was no longer viable.

The meeting also reviewed the challenge of resources for Nigeria’s military institutions.

Fayemi added that the NGF welcomed the appointment of new service chiefs and would fully support them.

Zamfara Governor, Bello Matawalle said he advised his Niger counterpart, Abubakar Bello, to negotiate with the terrorists.

Matawalle insisted negotiation was not a sign of weakness but part of peace efforts because he realised not all bandits were terrorists.

He made the remark after a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the State House on Wednesday.

Matawalle told reporters that he inherited banditry from the previous administration in Zamfara.

“It had been there for almost eight years before I came. Following the dialogue I initiated with the bandits, Zamfara is now very calm”, NAN quoted him as saying.

“I have advised the Governor of Niger to meet with all stakeholders and find out the root cause of the crisis so as to initiate dialogue and ensure reconciliation. That is the only way to achieve what I have been able to achieve in my State.

He disclosed that the governor was following steps for peace, adding that there shall be an end to the clashes soon.

Staff, students and family members of the Government Secondary School, Kagara in Niger, were kidnapped late Tuesday.

The federal government said there are political and military options on the table.