Stakeholders in boundary administrations have been called upon to embrace continuous relationship management to stem the tide of boundary disputes across the country.
Ondo State Deputy Governor and Chairman of the State Boundary Commission, Hon. Lucky Ayedatiwa made the call at an interactive session with Boundary Committees of the South West States of Nigeria held in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital.
The Deputy Governor also charged relevant authorities to place a premium on the economic interest of people of the borderlines to wade off conflicts.
While stressing the importance of dialogue in preventing likely escalated boundary crises, Ayedatiwa said stakeholders should consider regular enlightenment and sensitization of affected people in the borderlines.
He also urged leaders to have the deliberate political will to tackle boundary issues rather than adding political sentiments.
”if our political leaders will be very objective about these things, we can resolve a lot of the crises and if the economic interest of the people of the borderlines can also be ensured, there will be less crises.
”I also discover that continuous relationship management is what is required to address this issue. You can bring them to the round table some times and enlighten them.’ He said.
In his contribution, the Executive Secretary of the state boundary commission, Mr Abiodun Owolabi lamented that though all reported boundary cases in the state had received deserved attention, litigations in different courts was slowing down the pace of resolving some other boundary issues.
While also noting that some times, the variance between certain court pronouncements and the earlier government gazettes on the land issue often makes decision making difficult in dispute resolution, Owolabi called for harmony between relevant government bodies for easy boundary administration.
In her comment, the Ogun State Deputy Governor, Engr. Noimot Salako-Oyedele, identified the merging of people of multiple sub-ethnic cultures and languages together as one of the factors contributing to boundary disputes.
She called on the people to stop seeing their boundaries as lines that divide them and their neighbours but see them as bridges that connect them for opportunities.
Deputy Governors of other four states in the South-West Zone as well as the National Boundary Commission, NBC also presented their positions at the event
Tona Sina Adeyeye,
Deputy Governor’s Office