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UN Mission facilitates dialogue aimed at mitigating herdsmen-farmers crisis in the middle-belt region of Nigeria

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As part of efforts to mitigate the herdsmen-farmers crisis in some parts of Nigeria, the United Nations Trust Fund for Human Security (UNTFHS) has visited the country and met with key stakeholders to discuss the protracted conflict affecting numerous communities, particularly in Benue and Nasarawa states.

The violent conflict has led to massive displacement of people from the affected communities, death of hundreds and loss of livelihoods, posing a formidable threat to the country’s food security and long-term stability.

During the mission, the UNTFHS led by Ms. Mehrnaz Mostafavi facilitated a training workshop aimed at equipping implementing partners with the required knowledge and practical skills to apply the human security approach within the context of the country’s middle-belt. The workshop under the theme “Applying the Human Security Approach to Operationalize the Humanitarian-Development-Peace Nexus in Nigeria” held from 24th to 26th of June 2019.

Participants at the workshop appreciated the important role guaranteed human security plays in fostering socioeconomic development in the country. The visiting team shared insights into the significance of the human security approach as a framework for policy-making in complex development challenges.

While in Makurdi, Benue State capital, the team met with representatives of civil society organizations, farmers associations, local and state government representatives, community elders, traditional leaders, and representatives of local and international non-governmental organizations with whom they exchanged information on key elements of the human security approach which could be employed in promoting dialogue and peaceful resolution of conflicts, especially between the herdsmen and farmers in the region.

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The team later engaged in a policy dialogue in Abuja, organized by UNDP, in collaboration with UNHCR and FAO. The event, dubbed “Transitioning from humanitarian relief to long-term development: Addressing the herdsmen-farmers conflict in Nigeria” brought together senior UN representatives in the country, experts from national and local governments, civil society organizations, and the private sector, and explored several policy options that could be adopted in the quest to end the conflict. Key among the recommendations was the advocacy for comprehensive solutions, preventive and mitigating measures, which requires all key stakeholders are integrated into policy planning and response frameworks thereby strengthening long term resilience and safeguarding sustainable development.

The Policy dialogue also served as a platform to enhance multi-stakeholder partnerships to support implementation of the National Livestock Transformation Plan.

“The Human security approach recognizes the full array of challenges that can both propel the devastating force of a crisis and undercut prospects for sustainable peace and development. This essential understanding presents opportunities to complement immediate humanitarian efforts, while helping to shape long-term solutions that put people on the path to towards inclusive and sustainable development.” UN Resident Coordinator in Nigeria, Edward Kallon said in his opening statement at the event in Abuja.

Chief of the United Nations Human Security Unit, who is also leading the team, Ms. Mehrnaz Mostafavi noted that the challenges to human security of both farmers and herders and activities are structured around addressing the numerous risks to safeguard livelihoods and promote peace”.

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She added that a piecemeal approach will not address the prevalent cycle of violence and multi-faceted nature of the herder-farmer conflict, instead a comprehensive and integrated approach that addresses the root causes of the conflict while reducing the vulnerability of communities to protection risks is required.

This dialogue is the first in a series of consultations for the implementation of UNTFHS programme, a 3-year project being implemented by UNDP, UNHCR and FAO in partnership with Benue and Nasarawa State Governments. The overall goal of the intervention is to contribute to ending the herdsmen-farmers conflict in affected States.

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FG To Review Allowances Of Governors, Lawmakers, Others

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As part of efforts  targeted at  reducing the cost of governance, the Federal Government of Nigeria has directed the revenue mobilisation commission to review the allowances of political office holders including governors and lawmakers.

Senator Chris Ngige, the Minister of Labour and Employment, made this known  on Wednesday, during a meeting with members of the National Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE) in Abuja, the nation’s capital.

Speaking further, Ngige also decried the huge sum of recurrent expenditure in the proposed 2020 budget, insisting that there is no option other than to cut down the cost of running the government.

He said, “we cannot allow the government to shut down the economy because they want to pay salaries and wages. The 2020 budget of N10.3trillion has N3.88trillion as personal cost without an overhead. A budget that is 76% recurrent and 24% capital, for me, this is nothing to cheer about.

“Revenue mobilisation commission will also beam a searchlight and review what they are giving for political officeholders. Some of the allowances in their prescriptions are not allowances that should be gotten.

“What is a governor doing with hazard allowance? What is the hazard about, when the state is feeding him and his family? What is a governor doing with constituency allowance? The whole state is his constituency.

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“These are things that will be holistically reviewed”.

The Minister, however added  that both workers and politicians must be ready to make sacrifices so that more money will be available for infrastructure.

 

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Oyo, FRSC Embarks on Licence Plate Number Enforcement

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Oyo State Government in collaboration with Federal Road Safety Corp (FRSC) has embarked on enforcement exercise to ensure all motorcycle and tricycle riders get necessary driving documents and plate numbers so as to curb crime and other misdemeanors.

 

While addressing newsmen in his office shortly after the exercise, the Executive Chairman, Oyo State Internal Revenue Service (OYSIRS), Aremo John Adeleke, said most of the crimes being perpetrated in the State were done by motorcycle riders that did not have registration documents which could be used to trace them.

 

The Chairman explained further that the government wanted to make sure all road users comply with all extant registration and vehicle renewal requirements for them to operate business activities.

 

He said, “our people are alarmed that there are quite many motorcyclists and cyclists in the nooks and crannies of our society without any registration, this gives room for a lot of crimes and their ability to escape, It is important for motorists and riders to register and obtain their license and plate numbers, those who must renew their vehicle papers and license should also proceed to do so.

 

“Complying with registration is just one of the criteria in the process of obtaining a license, there are necessary tests and other activities such as data capturing before its procurement. In addition, there are enough plate numbers so the public need not do business with touts and third parties to get their papers,” he admonished.

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Aremo Adeleke advised the people of the State not to wait for enforcement before doing the right thing, assuring the public that the next phase of the exercise would concentrate more on private and commercial vehicle owners, urging them to do the needful before being enforced.

 

Speaking earlier on behalf of FRSC before the commencement of the exercise, the Deputy Corp Commander, Mr Olalekan Morakinyo told the task force to carry out the assignment with caution, stressing that they should make inquiries on why those concerned refused to obtain documents before plying the roads and direct them to appropriate quarters for the next step.

 

The exercise covered Onireke, Dugbe and Sango all within Ibadan metropolis with plan by the agency toit to the rest of the State in due course.

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Air Force Wings Nigerian First Female Combat Pilot, Others

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The Nigerian Air Force has commissioned its first female fighter pilot and the first female combat helicopter pilot in the history of the service.

Kafayat Sanni and Tolulope Arotile, trained in the United States and South Africa respectively were commissioned alongside eleven  other fighter pilots.

The Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar at the induction ceremony which took place at the NAF Headquarters in Abuja on Tuesday also winged the first female Air Warrant officer.  Grace Garba who was elevated last week.

According to Air Marshal Abubakar who conducted the winging alongside other invited guests,  capable human resources was at the heart of the Nigerian Air Force agenda.

He maintained that the force will continue to do everything within the available resources to improve its lot as far as human capital is concerned.

 

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