The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA), has slammed the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN) over his comments comparing the sale of spare parts in the North to the ban of open grazing in the South.
Malami’s comments had drawn the ire of political stakeholders with the Ondo Governor Rotimi Akeredolu challenging the AGF to court over the legality of the ban.
Corroborating this stance in its statement issued on Thursday by its President Emmanuel Onwubiko, HURIWA noted that “these two items are incomparable because whilst one is sold in an organised shopping mall by traders who pay rents and taxes to state government, cows that are openly grazed violently invade farm lands and have often caused destructions to farms.”
The group further slammed the AGF for trivialising the concerns of farmers who has repeatedly bemoaned the activities of some herders, resulting in the destruction of their farms and its attendant clashes.
“We are not in any way shocked that Malami, a Fulani-born lawyer and politician, has attacked southern governors for taking practical steps to checkmate the rampant invasions of farms in the south by armed Fulani herdsmen.
“It does appear that a federal attorney general does not understand the laws in such a way that he is mixing up animal rights and human rights.
“The Minister of Justice of President Muhammadu Buhari is unaware that the fundamental human rights provisions enshrined in the Nigerian constitution are not animal rights, which is why they are classified as human and not animal rights.
“That the Justice Minister of Nigeria now speaks for armed Fulani herdsmen is an unmitigated scandal, nevertheless not very strange to us because of our personal experience in a written exchanges with Malami recently.
“The same minister had written to us a response saying his office had not prosecuted any alleged armed Fulani herdsmen responsible for the many massacres around Nigeria since 2015 because government had no case file on the herdsmen killing farmers.”