The University of Illorin’s multi-million naira research and training farms have been destroyed by herdsmen, the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ilorin, Prof. Sulyman Abdulkareem revealed
On Monday that, following the incident, there was a meeting between the management of the educational institution and the leaders of 11 Fulani settlements located on the facilities grounds.
Law enforcement agencies comprising the Nigerian Police Force were in attendance for the meeting alongside the Department of State Security Services and the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps.
The vice-chancellor pointed out that the university’s management could no longer allow illegal grazing on its land.
He added that those who had started building permanent structures on the university’s land without approval from the management must move out from the university land in the interest of peace.
“We have a multi-million naira programme that is currently at stake now because they (herders) have gone to the extent of uprooting tubers of cassava for their cattle to feed on. We cannot conduct any research or training on the farm again because each time we get to a point where their cattle can feed on it… they go back there and destroy it.”
AbulKareem stated that the aim of the meeting as to make a decision on picking a specific deadline for the herdsmen and other illegal settlers to vacate the premise.
Although Prof. Abdulganiyu Ambali, in 2017 granted a three-month extension window to the settlers on request, he said the herders violated the agreement and failed to comply with it.
Usman Adamu the Chairman of the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association in response, told the UNIILORIN authorities that the herdsmen destroying the university farmland were not living in the community.
He also stated that the Fulani had been living peacefully on the land and had even helped in checking crimes, such as kidnappings, robberies, which hitherto occurred on the university campus. which happened in the universities premise.
Adamu has asked for the matter to be resolved no later than February 22, 2018.