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Buhari Meets CAN, pledges to address farmers/herdsmen crisis


President Muhammadu Buhari has again assured Nigerians that government will find a lasting solution to the lingering crisis between farmers and herdsmen.
This was part of resolutions reached on Friday between the President and the Christian Association of Nigeria.
The meeting with the leadership off the Christian Association of Nigeria CAN which was held at the instance of the Presidency took place at the Council Chambers of the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
It was a continuation of government’s consultation with stakeholders and interest groups on ways to move the country forward.
Speaking to Journalists at the end of the meeting, the President, Christian Association of Nigeria, Rev Samson Ayokunle said they drew the attention of the Nigerian leader to the problem of farmers and herdsmen and he pledged to tackle the problem.
Rev Ayokunle said they were humbled by the candid response of President Buhari.
He said: “We were very humbled by the calm disposition of the President and his humble response. I think this type of response will always make people be ready to offer help to the government. We  advised the government to address the issue of Fulani herdsmen squarely and the President responded in the affirmative that it was the result of the end of Ghadafi in Libya whereby, those who were armed by him have now moved down South, infiltrating into our country and are living with the herdsmen in Nigeria ravaging communities, adding that since the government now also know that this is a problem, they are doing something to stop them.”
The CAN President also said the association demanded the immediate payment of salary arrears in some States, in order to make life better for the citizenry.
“We advised that immediate attention be given to the payment of salaries and allowances of workers, as this may heighten the tension of the country as lack of payment of salaries had led to suicide and this has also led to increase in crimes as well. When people can’t find food to eat, they resort to whatever they can lay their hands on,” he said.
Commenting on the debated issue of introducing the Islamic Financial system, otherwise called Sukuk bond, the CAN President said government must be mindful of the provisions of the Nigerian constitution.
“Yes, we talk about keeping very close to the constitution. As l said before, there wasn’t any demon in Sukuk bond. But what was wrong is the constitutionality.  No CAN member is opposed to any Muslim running their own financial system, but it is wrong for the government to be the one who will be promoting it and initiating it. It was a violation of the constitution. We have talked to the government today to keep the sanctity of the constitution which will guide the behaviour and actions of everyone. They must be able to keep everybody together. The organizations that are religious where Nigerian presently is a member and signed treaties, the government should pull out of them in order to keep the sanctity of the constitution,” he advised.
The CAN President further said they demanded that Nigeria recruits more policemen, to address crimes in the society, adding that the policemen currently in service are inadequate.
“We also advised that more police be recruited. We have the problems of kidnapping, armed robbery, herdsmen attacks, militancy is also on the increase, about 300,000 Police cannot police a nation of about 200 million people, even if they are given the best of equipment. There are lots of young people who are ready to work. Government should therefore vote more funds for security,” the CAN President stated.
The CAN President said they expect government to act on all the resolutions breached at the meeting.
He said: “Beyond the promises, we want to see physical changes that will make all of us to be happy. Especially in the area of lopsided appointments where some states have 30 people and others have less than three. This will not give any sense of belonging to the government and to the country.”

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