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Why we’re creating a new Ministry of Livestock Development— Nigerian Govt

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Nigerian President, Bola Tinubu, on Tuesday, announced the creation of a new Ministry of Livestock Development as part of efforts towards addressing the age-long conflict between farmers and herders across the country.

The president made the announcement during the inauguration of the Presidential Committee on Livestock Reforms at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.

The Presidential Committee on Livestock Reforms, which will be chaired by former Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Attahiru Jega, is expected to propose recommendations aimed at fostering peaceful coexistence between herders and farmers while ensuring the security and economic well-being of all Nigerians.

The president stated that the new ministry would address herders and farmers’ clashes and bolster the livestock and dairy industries.

He added that the presidential committee wss set up after receiving a report from the National Conference on Livestock Reforms and Mitigation of Associated Conflicts in Nigeria, which included 21 recommendations, including the creation of a Ministry of Livestock Resources.

The president stated that the committee would collaborate with the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security to develop lasting solutions to the longstanding crisis between farmers and herders.

The new ministry, the president said, would go a long way to resolve the lingering conflict between herders and farmers in Nigeria over farmland and pasture which has been a serious matter of concern for past governments and has continued to escalate, causing significant casualties and raising tensions, particularly in the Middle Belt region of the country.

Drought and desertification in the north have forced pastoralist herdsmen to seek grazing lands further south, leading to competition over resources and clashes with settled farmers with the conflicts resulting in substantial loss of lives and livelihoods, undermining food security as well as enabling the proliferation of small arms, displace large numbers of people, and divert resources intended for development.

The conflicts have also escalated into citizens and vulnerable groups such as women, children, and the elderly becoming internally displaced persons (IDPs).

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After resignation of Zambian Anti-Corruption Commission DG, Hichilema sacks entire board

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A day after the Director-General of the Zambian Anti-Corruption Commission, Thom Shamakamba, resigned from his position over allegations of corrupt practices in the agency, President Hakainde Hichilema ACC board with immediate effect.

The Zambian Presidency said Hichilema’s decision was based on Article 270 of the Constitution and Section 26 of the Interpretation and General Provisions Act Chapter 2 of the Laws of Zambia.

Chief Communications Specialist at State House, Clayson Hamasaka, who confirmed the decision of the President in a statement issued in Lusaka on Thursday said the sacking of the board was to renew the Commission’s mandate to fight corruption.

“The President’s decision is intended to renew the Anti-Corruption Commission’s mandate in spearheading the fight against corruption and to implement necessary reforms to ensure the continued effective operations of the Commission,” Hamasaka stated.

The presidential spokesman highlighted the President’s unwavering commitment to fighting corruption and maintaining a zero-tolerance policy towards any corrupt practices.

“President Hichilema thanks and wishes the outgoing Board of Commissioners well in their future endeavors,” he added.

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Statistics reveal over 600k Nigerians sought asylum abroad under ex-President Buhari

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A new report released by Statisense, a data collection organisation, has revealed that well over 600,000 Nigerians filed for asylum in other countries between 2016 and 2023, during the administration of former President Muhammadu Buhari.

According to the report released on Wednesday, a total of 664,384 Nigerians sought asylum in eight years, with 355,792 persons applying for asylum in foreign countries between 2016 and 2019, while 308,592 sought asylum between 2020 and 2023.

“On a year-by-year basis, 66,862 sought asylum in 2016, 91,924 in 2017, 84,624 (2018), 112,382 (2019), 73,233 (2020), 83,105 (2021), 83,402 (2022), and 68,852 in 2023,” the report said.

“The figures indicate a surge from the past years, as Statisense noted that within 12 years – 2004 to 2015 – only 204,791 Nigerians filed for asylum in other countries.

“In total, 869,175 Nigerians filed for asylum in the last 20 years, notably from 2004 to 2023,” the report stated, citing the United Nations Refugee Agency.

“The organisation also stated that the Republic of Niger topped countries with the most Nigerian refugees in 2023 with about 200,497 Nigerians and a total of 1,268,464 Nigerian refugees between 2015 and 2023.

“Niger, a border country, shares proximity with Nigeria’s north, where residents battle a spate of insecurity in the region ranging from banditry, terrorism and herdsmen-farmers crisis,” it said.

“Nigerians topped the list of African countries who sought asylum in Canada in 2023 with about 10,111 asylum seekers followed by Kenya with 1,345.

“1,345 Nigerians however sought asylum in the United Kingdom and 5,136 in the United States of America,” the report added.

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