By Bashir Mohammed
Programme Officer, Centre For Information Technology and Development(CITAD), Abdul-Ganiyu Rufai Yakubu, has described forest mapping as a major catalyst for containing the persistent scourge of cattle rustling all over the country.
Speaking at a one-day workshop on forest mapping, taking Kamaku forest as a case study, organised by CITAD in conjunction with Google developers at Bayero University, Kano (BUK), Yakubu also stressed the need for effective networking of all the major black spots in the country where cattle rustling had almost become a recurring decimal, saying such activities “can be monitored via the web sites.”
He said the persistent activities of cattle rustlers was becoming a battle too tough for even the security agents to handle “looking at the thick and complex nature of the forests where cattle rustling has taken a disastrous toll on the Fulani whose cattle were almost rustled on a daily basis,” adding that with effective mapping the security agents would be able to identify their targets.
He said CITAD had also seen the compelling need to introduce the Cattle Rustling Information System (CATRIS) which could also serve to make the issue of broader networking feasible,
He said: “What we all want from the security agents is constant provision of information on where and when a certain incident is taking place. We can only beam our search light and identify the exact location via the websites the security agencies would use our findings to pounce on their targets.”
Yakubu revealed that the issue of conflict resolution could be exhaustively tackled through the adoption of modern techniques of digital age communication such as mapping the forests, stressing that CITAD had deemed it appropriate to chose Kamaku Forest as a case study “looking at its strategic importance in solving the problem of cattle rustling.”
He called on the partners responsible for developing Google to be alive to their responsibility, “most especially now that the challenges of addressing the issue of insecurity are enormous.”