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Dickson urged to cancel land deal with herdsmen

By Kelvin Ebiri, Port Harcourt   |   22 February 2017   |   2:34 am  

Fulani Herdsmen

Former President of the Ijaw National Congress (INC), Prof. Kimse Okoko, has warned of an imminent danger in Bayelsa State, except Governor Seriake Dickson cancels a land deal with the Fulani herdsmen.

Okoko told journalists in Port Harcourt yesterday, that the 1200 hectares of land that he allocated to them was defective because 75 per cent of the state is covered by water.

He warned that the state might become another flashpoint like Kaduna, Enugu, Anambra and Plateau states where the indigenous communities have been having bloody confrontation with herdsmen.

According to the Ijaw leader, Dickson’s explanation that the allocated palm plantation would confine them to one place was unrealistic, because it was not designed to be a ranch.

Okoko dismissed the high revenue, which the governor proposed to generate from the allocation, stating that a palm plantation was capable of generating higher revenue.

According to him, the economic implication of ceding the vast land to the herdsmen is that the state could no longer grow palm trees on the land.

He reiterated that all Bayelsan indigenes are vehemently opposed to the ceding because of the danger it portends.

He condemned the manhandling of a female activist, Ann Kio-Briggs by alleged government officials while protesting against the policy.

Okoko, who is the chairman of the association of pro-chancellors in the country, also faulted the proposed establishment of African University in the state, at a time when it is unable to adequately fund the existing Niger Delta University.



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