Bayelsa state governor Seriake Dickson has denied that the governor sold a portion of the oil-rich state’s lands to Fulani herdsmen.
Leadership reports that Dickson on Tuesday, February 21, met with leaders of Ijaw youths and ex-militant leaders from the nine states of the Niger Delta region over the controversy surrounding the alleged allocation of 1,200 hectares of land to Fulani herdsmen.
Dickson insisted that the land was allocated land and not sold as believed by many. This he said was to forestall break down of security in the state as it prepares to curtail the activities of the cattle breeders in the area.
He said: ”As you rightly observed, the state is more secured than how we met it five years ago and I am bold to tell you that your state has been adjudged as one of the best in term of security provision.
“All of us, including you played major role in this regard and I want you to continue in this spirit. As I always maintain Bayelsa is the Jerusalem of the Ijaw nation. Whether you are from Ondo or Akwa Ibom states, Bayelsa is your home.”
On Fulani herdsmen, Dickson said explained that Bayelsa people “do not want to experience what is happening in other state.
“In no distant time, it will soon become a criminal offence for herdsmen to ply their trade in our villages and communities, as government has restricted their operation to the Bayelsa Palm.”
Recall that Dickson had received a 48-hour ultimatum from a group of militant groups known as the Joint Revolutionary Council (JRC) to apologise to Ijaw woman activist Annkio Briggs or face their anger.
The JRC had accused Dickson of being behind an alleged assault on Briggs after she and others were attacked by hoodlums during a recent peaceful protest in Yenagoa, capital of the oil-rich south-south state a week ago over the allocation of 1, 200 hectares of land to Fulani herdsmen for cattle grazing.