Comment:These Fulani Herdsmen Again!!

The latest news that alien herdsmen, especially those from the Sahel region, are becoming a security threat in the country is disturbing. The herdsmen are said to be engaged in indiscriminate bush burning, thereby degrading the environment and also stealing people’s cattle in ranches. This and other nefarious activities were brought to light by the Ghana Network for Peace Building (GHANEP) at a news conference in Tamale at the weekend. Mr. Muntaka Hafix, acting national network coordinator of GHANEP, who addressed the conference, specially mentioned Fulani herdsmen in the Brong-Ahafo, Volta, Northern, Upper East and Upper West regions and warned that their activities were getting out of hand. It is abundantly clear that apart from the degradation of the environment, destruction of food crops the environment, destruction of food crops and pollution of water bodies, one serious consequence of the uncontrolled and illegal entry into the country of these herdsmen, is the introduction of diseases such as Contagious Bovine Pleura Pheumonia (CBPP). These herdsmen are also noted for their brutalities wherever they pitch their tent. Not only do they attack the men folk, they also commit the dastardly act of violently raping the women of these villages. Besides taking advantage of the proverbial Ghanaian hospitality towards foreigners these acts violate the spirit of ECOWAS and people and goods within the sub-region. Whilst Ghana cannot but continue to allow nationals of all ECOWAS countries unfettered access to her provisions of nature, such as free-growing grass for their cattle, the violent activities of these herdsmen are very provocative indeed. In many a community into which they have been accepted as temporary migrants, they have abused the hospitality. Aside of the hospitality issues, we beg to ask: if the ECOWAS Protocol on Trans Human prevents the movement of diseased animals from one country to other, then what prevents Ghana from stopping these herdsmen from entering the country with animals which may be diseased. The Minister of Food and Agriculture must act immediately to prevent the spread of animal diseases into the country. For a start, is it too much to ask that a certificate on the health status of the animals must be inspected? The Times also urges all District Assemblies, especially those around the border towns to be on the alert to monitor the movement of any strange convoy in their territory and inform the security agencies for appropriate action to be taken. The behavior of these herdsmen must not be taken lightly, especially when they have in their possession dangerous weapons which may be an indication that they have ulterior motives.