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"Proffer solutions to herdsmen/farmers conflict", NUC to Academia.

By Mbam Ogodo, Abakaliki
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The academia has been charged to make greater intellectual contributions in terms of practical and implementable solutions to the farmer/herdsmen conflict and other forms of conflicts in Nigeria.

The Executive Secretary, National Universities Commission( NUC) Abuja, Professor Abubakar Adamu Rasheed gave the charge in a convocation lecture titled, "The role of the Academia in Nation building and National integration in Nigeria" at Alex Ekwueme Federal University, Ndufu Alike Ikwo, Ebonyi state.

Prof. Rasheed lamented that the largely peaceful Fulani herdsmen and their various host farmers have engaged in perpetual conflict with attendant loss of lives and property and that has continued to challenge their peaceful co - existence.

He regretted the seeming silence from the academia in terms of identifying the root causes as well as proffering the ways or means of addressing them through workable solutions and attributed it to a disconnect between government and the academia.

"The largely peaceful Fulani herdsmen and their various host farmers for example, have suddenly become engaged in seemingly perpetual conflict with attendant loss of lives and property.

" What bothers me even more, is the seeming silence from the academia in terms of identifying the root causes as well as proffering the ways or means of addressing them through workable solutions.

"I believe that those of us in the academia ought to have made greater intellectual contributions in the search for solutions to the farmer/herdsmen conflict"

The NUC Secretary stressed on the need to engage in education for social cohesion with more creative and proactive approach to education which he said should include the establishment of unique and customized courses/programs that would facilitate cohesion and national unity.

He also called on the academic institutions to strive and train graduates who are truly worthy in learning and character and teach those who govern interpersonal and political action which consists of social and legal principles underpinning good citizenship among others.

Prof. Rasheed said considering the number of tertiary institutions in Nigeria, their statutory roles and property the ever increasing enrollments, the country does not need to look elsewhere for solutions to its search for a socially cohesive nation.