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Fulani Herdsmen activities are cankerworm that has eaten deep into the fabrics of our economy, political, and educational system. Every part of the world has gotten its fair share of the social evil including Nigeria. One of the single issues that has dominated the educational system today is the activities of the Fulani Herdsmen, which affects the educational development of Bokkos Local Government Area. The global anxiety and concern for Fulani Herdsmen crisis today can only be compared with the anxiety and concern that gripped the international community in the immediate post Second World War years over the possibility of a nuclear holocaust. Alao and Atere (2012) posit that Fulani Herdsmen is globally becoming a house hold word as there is no community in Nigeria that is completely free from its effect.

Nigeria is usually characterized as a deeply divided state in which major political issues are vigorously and or violently contested along the lines of the complex ethnic, religious, and regional divisions in the country. Bokkos has been involved in all sorts of crisis ranging from communal, religious, tribal, inter-ethnic crisis and Fulani herdsmen. This situation is posed a great concern not just to the government agencies but to the entire populace of Nigeria. From its inception as a colonial state, Nigeria has faced a perennial crisis of territorial or state legitimacy, which has often challenged its efforts at national cohesion, democratization, stability and economic transformation (Maier, 2016).

Looking at Fulani herdsmen activities in Nigeria, it is a common sight to see cows roaming the highways and major streets, obstructing traffic movement without any control. It is also common to hear of cows taking over the runways of airports in Nigeria without anybody being brought to account for any trespass (Mikairu, 2016). These are criminal transgressions which the Fulani herdsmen have been associated with across the country. In every society there are certain behavioural patterns expected of every member of the society in order to ensure peace and tranquility. In that regard, political authorities proscribe certain abnormal behaviour as tantamount to breach of peace and social order whenever committed. These abnormal behaviours are proscribed and sanctioned whenever they are committed under the laws of the people. These acts so proscribed by the people (state) and punished under the code of law are said to be crime. Thus, crime according to Siegel (2017, p. 18), is seen as: 

“A violation of societal rules of behaviour as interpreted and expressed by a criminal legal code created by people holding social and political power. Individuals who violate these rules are subject to sanctions by state authority, social stigma, and loss of status”.

The need to create an environment that is not only conducive but also free from any form of intimidation and fear for staff/students and school properties. In regard to this, Idoko (2020) states that various school authorities try to create a conducive environment where necessary manpower, learning facilities and materials are adequately provided. Though in the 21st century, schools seem to have experienced a lot of setbacks as regard to effective and efficient management of schools as a result of frequent attack.

Fulani herdsmen is now a political, social and economic implications for members of the society. It also means that those who hold political power are bound by the oath of office to enforce the law in order to ensure Fulani herdsmen are protected. It also applies that those who hold political powers rely on the law in order to carry out their duty and so crime when committed must be punished no matter who is involved. However, the politics being played out by the present government regarding various acts of violent crimes – murder (killing of innocent citizens); criminal damage (unlawful entering of another person’s farm, destruction of farm crops, destruction of homes, Churches, and schools); sexual offences (rape, sexual assaults and molestations); abductions, armed robbery and kidnappings being carried out by Fulani herdsmen across the country remain unchecked and on the upsurge. It is vital to stress that between June, 2015 and May, 2018 about 1525 persons have been murdered by Fulani herdsmen across the Plateau State (Adeoye & Alagbe, 2019). More so, 808 persons were killed while 1, 422 houses were destroyed in Southern Plateau state by Fulani herdsmen (Adegun, 2019). Though, this statistical report is not verified by any government commission. These acts of criminality and the way they have been glamorized by those who are placed in authority to defend the unity and security of all Nigerians depicts a complete failure of government in itself and constitutional responsibility.

The implication is that while the acts of criminality of the Fulani herdsmen are being glamorized, politicized, and overlooked many Nigerians are being killed and communities destroyed on daily basis. The government quickly forgets that “safeguarding the sovereign, independence and territorial integrity of the state were the central pillar of Nigerian National Security Policy” (The Library of Congress, 2014). The attitude of government towards the wanton destruction of lives and property and acts of criminal violence committed with impunity by Fulani herdsmen across the county have not in any way shown serious concern of government to safeguard the sovereignty and unity of Nigeria. The questions that come to mind are “How long will government play this politics while lives are being lost on daily basis?” “How long will government inflict pains and tolerate injustice, just because a certain group of people are involved while the country is gradually fizzling out?” “Is current government change tilt towards achieving a covert and latent agenda for the benefit of some groups regardless of all others?” “How long will government go to protect one ethnic group against others to score a political point?” These are puzzles for all well-meaning and sane minds in Nigeria to crack before the country becomes the African Angola and our dream as a united giant of Africa is dashed. The body language of the present government towards the criminal impunity of Fulani herdsmen will spell doom for Nigeria’s nascent democracy and future as a nation.

The Fulani herdsmen carry sophisticated firearms (in disregard to laws prohibiting this kind of act) and attack their target communities at ungodly hours when the members of the community are most susceptible to defend themselves. The Fulani herdsmen carry their attack at midnights or Sundays when the people are asleep or gone to Church. They kill people – women, children and the aged with impunity and without pity, burning houses and looting their properties. Sunday (2016) laments that “The brutality and impunity with which the assailants operate without regard for the law and the sanctity of life is appalling”. The modus operandi (MO) that they use resemble that of mercenaries ‘surprise and attack or hit and run’. The motive for these attacks and killings cum criminalities is very pregnant and portend great danger to us as a nation. The most disheartening is the fact that thousands of children have been rendered orphans while poor women are widowed. The cumulative effect is heightened in increased food insecurity, school dropouts, early girl child pregnancies, diseases, and socio-psychological traumas.

The Global Terrorism Index (2015) classified Fulani herdsmen as a terror group and the fourth most lethal terrorists group in the World. It is observed that between 2010 and 2013, Fulani herdsmen killed a total of 80 people but in 2014 alone 1,229 people were killed with Benue, Taraba, Nasarawa, Plateau, Kaduna and Katsina states worst hit (Sunday, 2016; Ndukwe, 2016). But with the onset of the present APC government in May 29, 2015, the acts of terrorism exhibited by Fulani herdsmen on individuals and communities emerged with greater pattern, intensity and potential consequences on our national security. Today, many communities and farm lands have been deserted for Fulani herdsmen while food scarcity and sustenance is eating deep as economic recession tightens its knots on the people.

We have heard about a Catholic Priest being abducted, we have heard about Churches being burnt, we have heard about women being raped. Every single day, day-by-day, lives are lost. The Federal government has refused to say anything; the presidency has been quiet over the Fulani invaders (Thandillbam, 2016). Cattle rearing in Nigeria especially in Northern Nigeria are not new because it is the primary occupation of the Hausa/Fulani. However, cattle rearing in South East, Nigeria is rare to the people especially the pastoralist’s type of moving from one place to another. Nomadic Fulani herdsmen are basically required to graze over unused or unfarmed lands and this should and has been the practice in the past where they exist (Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), 2011). However, Awogbade (1987) observed that most Fulani herdsmen (Pastoralists) do not have their own grazing land for their livestock and so move from place to place in search of green areas. It puzzles us, to believe that most Fulani herdsmen do not have any grazing land of their own. This is because every person has inherited forefather’s land or are we saying that these Fulani herdsmen are strangers without a place called their birth place. True, as it may sound, they have no right to foist their own freedom and livelihood on another’s freedom and livelihood. The impunity in which they impose their grazing rights on farmers and the various acts of criminality committed amounts to breach of individual fundamental rights which are prejudicial to peaceful co-existence and unity. It must be agreed that “Poor subsistence farmers and pastoralists depend on the availability of usable land and pasture for their livelihhods” (Fasona, Fabusoro, Sodiya, Adedayo, Olorunfemi, Elias, Oyedepo, & Oloukoi, 2016).

Fulani herdsmen are concern with the destructions of lives and properties, depravation of right to education and declined in effective administration and academic achievement of students which currently posed a very big challenge to Nigerian government both at the federal, state, and local level as well as multinational enterprises operating in the country. Halima (2019) state that the educational implications of the growing rate of crisis and insecurity in Nigeria can be measured from different perspectives. Halima, argued that the cost of destruction of educational properties and national productivity are directly affected, while there are long term indirect cost of confronting and curbing the menace. The challenge of controlling crisis, crimes and herders-farmers clashes has really been very expensive. Federal government has spent a whale of amount on defense and security. The federal government expenditure on security is so heavy compared to expenditures on other critical sectors of the society (Halima, 2019). With the state of the nation now, one may not be considered to be totally wrong to say that herders-farmers clashes have given Nigeria and Nigerians more bad labels in three years than corruption has done in the 60 years of nationhood (Halima 2019).

In spite of the efforts of government, stakeholders, parents, non-governmental organizations and the administrators of secondary schools in Plateau State of Nigeria to ensure a conducive teaching and learning environment that will enhance students’ academic performance, the problems associated with herders-farmers conflicts seem to hamper and overwhelm these efforts. This may be due to the series of attacks on the rural dwellers in the study area by suspected herders which have led to killings and destruction of properties worth billions of naira. Most often, school facilities such as classrooms, office buildings, educational technology materials, and relevant documents were destroyed, lives and school were hampered. This may influence the teaching/learning processes in the affected secondary schools in terms of school facilities and enrolment as thousands of these students who may have moved with their families to places of safety may have had their schooling programme disturbed.

When Fulani herdsmen trample upon the rights of farmers or allow their cows to encroach upon farmer’s crops, a fundamental right is breached resulting to crime. These breaches or crimes must be addressed squarely for the benefit of national security. The failure of government to address these seemingly criminalities have resulted to insecurity which has affected national psyche. The take is that government is one sided parochial, self-seeking, and exhibiting ethno-religious cum political agenda.


This attempt is made at examining what we consider as the influence of Fulani herdsmen on education in Bokkos. The silent and the so called body language of the present government seem to be the only fulcrum fueling with intensity the unwarranted wanton killings activities of the Fulani herdsmen across the country. Never in the history of Nigeria have we seen these massive killings been so accepted and glamorized as a way of expressing grievance or seizing another man’s property except perhaps during the civil war or the Jihad. The attitude and modus operandi of the Fulani herdsmen in using the back door to gain access of another man’s property is an expansionist’s ideology, exploitative, criminal, suppressive and confrontational that it could lead to war.

Attendance to school is dependent on the readiness of the child, encouragement from parents, provision of school materials, distance to school and above all the security of the child. Fulani herdsmen have become a threat to most parents and children in secondary schools. There are series of cases of bombing and burning of schools, kidnapping of students and burning down houses in Nigeria. Nigeria has had its unfair dose of violent and terrorist acts perpetrated by interest groups, identifiable individuals and organization as well as fifth columnists acting sometimes on behalf of the state particularly during Nigeria’s long history of military interregnum. Different groups with different names have masterminded violence and terrorist attacks in Nigeria at different times and places. The group ranges from the Niger Delta ethnic militants in south south, Oodu’a People’s Congress (OPC) in the south west, Indigenous People of Biafra Movement for the Sovereign State of Biafra (IPOB) in the South East and the Jama’atul Alilus Sunnah Lidda’ await Jihad, popularly referred to as Boko Haram in the north east and west, and Fulani militia in north central part of the country. The incidences of kidnapping, hostage taking of the workers of multinational companies and militancy in the Niger Delta region and the Boko Haram insecurity and crisis in the northern states are cases in point (Ogbonnaya and Ehigiamusoe 2021).

These problems do not only affect students and teachers but they also prevent teachers from concentrating on teaching and students from concentrating on learning process, while the administration of the schools is also affected. Children by right are legally required to attend school, school personnel have the corresponding duty to provide children with a safe, secure, and peaceful environment in which learning can occur. The administrators in secondary schools are confronted with problems of students possessing and fighting with weapons such as the result of illegal use of arms by herders and farmers where students injure themselves with weapons. School properties worth millions of naira are damaged due to these conflicts. Many students go to school with guns in bid to protect themselves and some others sold themselves to the Boko Haram Sect and are being used to bomb down schools as in the case of one Federal Government Colleges in Yobe State, where a child was made to bomb down the school.

However, the situation worsens as both groups continue to cause havoc to the community, endangering the lives of people (Genyi, 2014). While the government of Nigeria has displayed lack of capability in resolving the conflict and providing long-lasting solution in various communities that suffered significant loss of lives and properties as a result of the conflict (Usman, 2013). It becomes imperative to critically examine both the structural and processual variables responsible for the conflict which are essential to ending the conflict to avoid future occurrences.


The main purpose of this study is to investigate influence of Fulani herdsmen on academic performance of secondary school students  of Bokkos Local Government Area of Plateau State. While emphasis is placed on the following purposes:

  1. determine the effects of Fulani herdsmen on students academic performance of students in Bokkos Local Government Area of Plateau State
  2. determine the effects of Fulani herdsmen on students’ enrolment in Bokkos Local Government Area of Plateau State.
  3. To determine available emergency response plans for combating Fulani herdsmen in Bokkos Local Government Area of Plateau State.
  4. To find out measures to be adopted in settling displaced people affected by Fulani herdsmen in Bokkos Local Government Area of Plateau State.
  5. What are the effects of Fulani herdsmen on students academic performance of students?
  6. What are the effects of Fulani herdsmen on students enrolment?
  7. What are the available emergency response plans for combating Fulani herdsmen?
  8. What are the measures to be adopted in settling displaced persons affected by Fulani herdsmen?

1.5 Research Hypotheses

            The study is been guided by the following null hypotheses which will be tested at 0.05 level of significance.

  1. There is no significance relationship between Fulani herdsmen and students education.
  2. There is no significance relationship between Fulani herdsmen on students enrolment.

            This study will help the community to focus on measures for improving security situations in schools, it will help create good school climate for encouraging effective learning.

            The study will be useful to school governing boards, school staff, students, state, and federal governments and to researchers.

            Governing boards have the broadest role in ensuring school safety. Boards create the philosophical foundation that guides decisions and direct future actions. Through their governance roles, boards adopt policies, programmes and curricula that can contribute to safe environment for all students and staff. With the help of this study, the board members will rise to their roles to ensure that the link between security and opportunity for academic success is publicized to the community. This is because the study will expose security improvement measures needed for effective academic environment.

            The study will also be useful to the school staff. The implementation of school security strategies is the responsibility of all staff and with the findings of this study; the staff will be exposed to strategies for managing safety in the schools. The study will also help the school staff develop safety plans, intervention and alternative strategies and codes of conduct for improving safety and security in schools

            Furthermore, the study will have some significant effect on the students. This is because the study articulates measures for improving students’ security. With the adoption of the measures, it is hoped that the students will stay in schools under safe and secured conditions. Also the study will be useful to the state and federal governments. They pass laws and regulations that have impact on schools and other agencies on security matters. Findings of the study will help them to articulate laws and policies that will provide adequate safety and security in schools.

            Finally, the study will be useful to researchers who may conduct related studies on effective ways of ensuring that schools are secured.


The scope of the study is restricted to influence of Fulani herdsmen on education of Bokkos Local Government Area. The content focuses on the relationship of government and community affected by Fulani herdsmen, government efforts and available emergency response plans for combating Fulani herdsmen and measures to be adopted in settling displaced students affected by Fulani herdsmen.

  • Format: ms-word (doc)
  • Chapter 1 to 5
  • With abstract reference and questionnaire
  • Preview Table of contents, abstract and chapter 1 below

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