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are skilled in constructing the camps, have relocated to urban centres, and there are fears that such skills may vanish soon, as the builders become deskilled as soon as they sink into the urban setting. Many aspects of the Fulani heritage have evaporated or are slowly vanishing, and the camp itself is one of those items that will transit to something else, so argues Dr. Tukur Baba of the Department of Sociology, Usman Dan Fodio University, Sokoto “With increasing education, and urbanisation, everybody is beginning to realise that some practices common among the Fulani are harmful. These include sharo,the use of body marks as well as female genital mutilation.”
Jibrin Shuaibu, Secretary, MACBAN in Wamba local government of the state, has a different opinion on the state of the camps “The numbers are increasing instead of decreasing. In the past you won’t get up to 12,000 nomads in Wamba, but now they number 500,000. This represents an increase in the camps,and is a fallout of crises. Nomads from other places are trooping to Wamba to settle. The crises in southern Kaduna and Benue, for instance, have pushed many of them here.” Ibrahim Hassan, Extension Officer, National Commission for Nomadic Education (NCNE) Gwagwalada, adds that he noticed a decline in the number of the camps in the country,at the time of the Zangon Kataf crises of 1992.
Yahaya Mogauri, Extension Officer with the NCNE in Kogi State, comments on the fall in number of camps in the state “99% of the nomads I met when I began work here in 1996 have left to other states,or to neighbouring countries, such as Togo, Ghana and Burkina Faso. This rapid migration is on account of ethnic problems,kidnapping, cattle rustling, climate change, and harassment by security agents.”
He adds that the places where those camps used to exist,are just empty swathes of land today, and says that the 99% he referred to earlier, is made up of ‘3,000 to 5,000 nomads, and represents at least 200 camps which have since left the state.’ Ibrahim Abubakar Jalido, Chairman caretaker committee MACBAN, Kogi State, also confirms that many camps have vacated the state for other countries in recent times.
‘They call it Walbe’ But how do the nomads refer to their dwelling? The Fulani don’t use the word ‘Ruga’ which is a Hausa word. Rather, they utter ‘Walbe.’ But the name changes among the Fulani, owing to numerous dialectical differences. Dr. Baba, who is an expert on the Sociology of Pastoral Society’s, says “there are a variety of Fulfulde words
Rustling, violence, kidnapping a the camp into a tight corner, colla
Bawa: ‘The whole world is changing.’
Dono says that many nomads abandoned their camps in Nasarawa