Inspector General of Police (IGP) Solomon Arase at the weekend said most troublesome herdsmen were not Nigerians but foreigners, who entered the country with their cattle due to the porous borders.
Arase spoke while reacting to a question raised by a farmer on “persistent attacks of herdsmen” at an interactive section with stakeholders on community policing in Akure, the Ondo State capital.
He noted that most of these violent herdsmen are either from Mali or Chad, saying Nigerian herdsmen are law abiding.
Arase urged the farmers to be careful and take caution in dealing with them.
The IGP said the police and states now partner on how to build ranches for herdsmen, adding that he earlier discussed with Governor Olusegun Mimiko.
His words: “I have taken suggestions about how we can develop big ranches so that they can stop grazing on farmlands.
“We should also know about the history of migration. Most of these herdsmen are not Nigerians. They are people from Mali, Chad, who came into our system. So that is why we have to be careful. Our borders are porous. Predominantly, our own herdsmen are law abiding people.
“But when people come from outside with their cattle, we should not deny them entry because of ECOWAS protocols, good neighbourliness but at the same time we should not allow them to embark on criminal activities.”