The Zamfara State Government, on Tuesday, organised a cultural festival for ex-bandits as part of the peace pact it reached with them.
The Fulani cultural festival “sharo” is a yearly event organised at the end of the Eid-el-Kabir festival. The festival was last held eight years ago due to insecurity occasioned by banditry perpetuated by bandits suspected to be Fulanis.
Governor Bello Matawalle invited the Fulanis and repentant bandits for the festival in fulfillment of the peace agreement the state government reached with the ex-bandits.
Over 20,000 Fulani and well-wishers attended the festival where Fulani popular cultural activities were displayed.
Governor Matawalle, top government functionaries, Fulani leaders and repentant bandits graced the event.
Matawalle commended the reformed bandits and the Fulani leaders for accepting the peace initiatives brought up by his administration.
He expressed delight that this year’s Eid-el-Kabir was celebrated without any killings in the state.
He said: “I want to use this opportunity to thank my Fulani brothers for accepting the peace accord. This year’s Eid-el Kabir is the only one we witnessed where no life was lost as a result of banditry.”
He noted that his administration would soon come out with welfare packages for the Fulanis to enable them to live decent lives.
The state Chairman, Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association, Alhaji Ahmed Husaini, who commended the governor for allowing the Fulanis to perform their cultural festival, assured him that the Fulani have agreed to abide by the peace pact.
“All of us who are Fulanis in Zamfara State are ready to ensure lasting peace in the state. We will support you (the governor) in your effort to move the state forward,” Ahmed added.
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