Some of the indigenes of Nimbo Community in Uzo Uwani LGC of Enugu state, where the deadly attack by suspected herdsmen attacked happened in April 2016, are gradually returning to their homes after they desertion. They are beginning to pick up the bits of their lives-rebuilding their homes, and trying to go back to farm which is their only source of livelihood.
Life is no longer the same for some of them. Emma, one of the indigenes of Nimbo who lost two relatives in the attack said to while on farmers sensitization programme in Uzo Uwani Local Government council; “I have forgiven them (suspected herdsmen), but I will never eat Fulani cattle meat again.” He narrated how the rampaging herdsmen stole into their community, killing and maiming innocent farmers and residents, leaving the community desolate. I do not know how Emma would distinguish between Fulani meat and other meat, but it would be awkward to ask a grieving man such probing question.
“I am afraid to go to the farm because I do not know if they will lay ambush for me like they did to my relatives”, the visibly devastated Emma said. Emma’s cassava farmland was completely destroyed, and he needs cassava stem to start up planting in order not to lose out completely in the current rainy season, but he cannot find where to get stem.
While encouraging him, I linked him up to the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) where he will not only get stems, but also improved stems for higher yield.
Moving round the Local Government council, I saw heavy presence of the Nigerian Army and the Nigerian Police who are on ground to avert any breakdown to maintain law and order. I also saw Fulani herdsmen freely grazing in the rich vegetation of the area with no apparent threat. Obviously, relative peace is returning to the community and I hope it remains like that continually.
Now, what is needful is for the government and NGOs to work with the survivors to deal with the trauma from the attack as well as provide other supports which they need. The victims need immediate assistance, as the herdsmen inflicted heavy physical and mental injury on them.