Rural Africa Weekly Report: Resolving Fulani Herdsmen/Host-Community Face-off and Other Reports
Happy New Year once again!
As usual, every week, Rural Reporters collate reports on development in rural Africa and its environs. The reports include some of our top picks from recent must-read research, interviews, reports, blogs and in-depth articles which have been carefully selected to help you keep up with global issues. Here are some of the updates you may have missed from the previous week:
Clashes between herdsmen and host community have been at the forefront of the 19th and 20th century Nigeria. Several communities have been left shattered. Most of the conflicts usually occur in the North-Central and North-Eastern parts of the country. However, in recent times, cases of similar nature have been reported in the South-East and South-West parts of the country. Of much prominence is the kidnapping of Chief Olu Falae on 21 September, 2015 by suspected Fulani herdsmen which brought about tension in the land. The unfortunate incident also prompted the Yoruba socio-cultural organisation, Afenifere, to call for the immediate release of the elder statesman while giving ultimatum to the Fulanis in the South West to vacate the region.
As part of response to the menace, the Federal Government, on 24 March, 2015 constituted a committee with mandate to come up with additional grazing reserves around the country in addition to the existing 415. The former Minister of Agriculture, Mr. Adewunmi Adesina, said that the Government is coming up with measures including deployment of satellite imagery and geographical information system (GIS) maps to track movement of animals across the country.
Former president, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, has advised Nigerians to unite to improve their respective rural communities, saying government alone cannot satisfy all the infrastructure needs of rural dwellers.
Delivering his goodwill message at the 2015 edition of the Ibogun-Olaogun Day in Ibogun Olaogun village, Ifo LGA of Ogun State at the weekend, Obasanjo who described rural development as a collective responsibility, said: “As responsible people in our respective rural areas, we should not wait for the governments”.
He said the physical, social and educational development of rural dwellers largely depends on whatever contributions individual members can make.
“We don’t need to wait for government before developing our communities, particularly some of us who were raised from the villages. We should not wait for any government ticket. Let us think of what we can do for ourselves and our communities, what can we do for ourselves to make the village communities more habitable for us”, he said.
Doctor Akinwunmi Adesina, Nigeria’s former Minister of Agriculture and President of the African Development Bank Group was recently awarded an Honorary Doctorate Degree (Doctor of Science, Honoris Causa) by his Alma Mater, Obafemi Awolowe University, Ile-Ife. In an interview with Jimoh Babatunde, he outlined his vision as President of AfDB i n the areas of provision of energy, industrialization, agriculture, integrating the continent and improving the quality of life for Africans.
He said Africa Development Bank is investing heavily in infrastructure, ports, rails, air transport facilities that will make it easier to connect countries, land lock countries to coastal countries, adding that at the end of the day development is about people. ‘We must put people at the very heart of development”, he said.
Shishimpe community is located in the outskirt of Mpape town in Bwari area council of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) and has since been burdened with the lack of basic amenities. Just like many other rural communties in the territory, Shishimp which has an estimated population of about 500 people lacks basic amenities like portable water, adequate health care, good roads and power supply.
The indigenes of the community, who are mainly farmers, wake up everyday to go about their normal farming business, not minding the huzzling and bustling of Mpape town most nearest to them, while the women in the community bear the brunt of the lack of basic amenities, as it is witnessed with a start of their normal daily activities.
The International Confederation of Midwives (ICM) has empowered more rural midwives in Nigeria through skills training, mentoring and incentives.
Practicing and student midwives in Kwara, in the north-central region of Nigeria ,have benefitted from the exercise.
In some parts of rural Chiredzi, women are having a torrid time with their partners who demand that they bear as many children as possible.
Teen pregnancies are rampant in the district and challenges associated with teen motherhood put their lives at risk as reproductive systems of most teenagers would not have matured enough to handle the trauma of child birth.
During a recent Unicef media tour of Chiredzi, women told harrowing tales of abuse at the hands of their spouses who were mostly resident in neighbouring South Africa.
Every day, nearly half the people in the world prepare their meals over burning wood, charcoal or animal dung. And every year, more than 4 million people — most of them women and children — die prematurely from the resulting household smoke. The practice also contributes to deforestation and climate change.
“This is a big problem, bigger than outdoor air pollution or dirty water,” said Kirk Smith, an expert in health and climate effects of household energy at the University of California, Berkeley, School of Public Health.
But the issue has remained widely overlooked — until now.