There have been several deadly clashes recently between herders and farmers with the latest leading to the death of 73 people in Benue. According to Reuters, the Presidency said the limited availability of land prompted both parties to adopt all means to meet their need. “President Buhari holds the view, as do many experts, that these conflicts are more often than not, as a result of major demographic changes in Nigeria,” said the presidency in an emailed statement. “Nigeria’s population was around 63 million when the West African country gained independence in 1960, compared with a population now “estimated at close to 200 million”. “While the land size has not changed and will not change, urban sprawl and development have simply reduced land area both for peasant farming and cattle grazing.”

The United Nations estimates that Africa’s most populous country is set to become the country with the world’s third largest population, behind India and China, by 2050.Towards addressing the situation, the presidency said it will organise a conference in an attempt to proffer short and long-term solutions to the problem. How bad is the situation? The middle-belt region of Nigeria is a vastly green field, thus a designation point for most nomadic herders looking to feed their cattle. Thus, leading to a frequent clash between the farmers and herders. Cultural and religious diversities of these group – farmers are mostly Christians and herders are Muslim Fulani, created another tune for the crisis. Thus, making the situation more complex.