A former Vice-President and presidential aspirant on the platform of Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, on Sunday said the clashes between Tivs and fulani herdsmen were caused by misunderstanding.
Atiku stated this while speaking with journalists during his visit to a first-class Chief, His Royal Highness, Abu King Shuluwa in Makurdi.
Atiku who is the Zege Mule U Tiv (protective shield of Tiv nation) said stopping herdsmen and farmers clashes in Benue was a simple thing to do.
“Traditionally over a number of years, Tiv and Fulanis have coexisted. I believe that what is happening of recent can be attributed to sponsored misunderstanding between Tivs and Fulani herdsmen and we have always done our best to resolve the conflict.
We have always sat down to resolve the conflict. As Zege Mule U Tiv, I have spearheaded many meetings to resolve conflicts.”
The former Vice-President said that if voted into office, he would look for better ways to stop the clashes.
Asked if he would work with anyone who would emerge as the party candidate in the forthcoming primary, Atiku said the only way all the presidential aspirants would work together after the party primary was to have free, fair and credible primary election
He said he and other aspirants had been looking forward to the primary election holding in Port Harcourt, Rivers State on October 5 and 6, 2018.
He noted that he would abide by the decision of the delegates if the primary was conducted without manipulation.
Whoever emerges the party candidate in Port Harcourt we will support him if the primary election is free, fair and credible.”
In his remark, Shuluwa said Tiv people had no issue with the Fulani, stressing that those attacking and killing the Tiv people were not Fulani of Nigeria origin.
“The Fulani that you see fighting the Tiv people are not the Fulani that we know and I have always said this. We don’t know where these crop of Fulani come from. The Fulani who are indigenes of Nigeria can never fight a Tiv man.
“As time goes on, all our differences will be healed up. We will make sure that the Fulani that are non Nigerians don’t come into this land.
“That one I can assure everybody. But we have nothing against the Fulani generally.”