Grazing routes: Tiv youths vow to defend Benue land with their blood - SALIENT TIMES ONLINE

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Monday, 23 August 2021

Grazing routes: Tiv youths vow to defend Benue land with their blood

By Our Correspondent 

 


Reactions have continued to trail plans by the Presidency to revive grazing routes in some states of the county.

 

 

This time, Benue youths under the auspices of Tiv Youth Organization (TYO) Worldwide, have vowed to resist the president’s move to turn Nigeria into an emirate saying “we will defend our land with our blood.”

 

 

The President General, TYO, Mr. Timothy Hembaor, in a press statement, said the people of Benue and Nigeria will rise and reject the grazing routes Buhari wants to create for his tribesmen adding that “the design to turn Nigeria into an emirate will never see the day.”

 

He said TYO was unbelievably shocked and disappointed that President Muhammadu Buhari has approved recommendations of a committee to review “with dispatch,” 368 grazing sites across 25 states in the country, “to determine the levels of encroachment.

 

“This is a classical case of deja vu and we are ready to be the children of our ancestors. The Sokoto jihad started this in the 19th century and it failed. The Fulani could not overrun Tiv land and the progress we have made is enough to enable us hold the line of defense drawn by our courageous forebears,” the youth said.

 

 

 

Hembaor who stated that grazing sites do not exist in Benue state said if cattle were allowed to move through Benue to various places in the country and elsewhere, such routes are no more.

 

 

 

He observed that the population explosion has made it very clear that the land which hitherto laid desolate has now been occupied by various communities who eke out a living daily to survive.

 

 

 

The statement further read in part, “The people of Benue and Nigeria will rise and reject the grazing routes Buhari wants to create for his tribesmen. The design to turn Nigeria into an emirate will never see the day.

 

 

 

“Naturally, the Tiv are in Central Nigeria and while grazing routes can be established up north, they will not pass through Benue and we are sure our brethren from the east will support us to resist the evil genie that is knocking on our door.

 

 

 

“We know Buhari does not listen to superior advice but he must know that the quest to divide our land to offer safe passage to his marauding kinsmen may be the final straw for his presidency.

 

 

 

“He will have to kill every Tiv person to make it happen and that will not happen because the world has moved from his frozen mindset, a thought process that believes in the decadence of feudalism, religious fanaticism and fundamentalism. And cows and other livestock spook easily when blood desecrates the land.”