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This study examines cross-border pastoral mobility and security challenges in oke-ogun, Nigeria. Thus the major problem that elicit the desire for this work is if poor management of pastoral trans-border migration is implicated in the insurgency in North-East and Southern Nigeria. The migrant control propositions extracted from migration theory will be used as our frame work of analysis. Our data analysis will be sourced from the secondary source of data findings includes that many of pastoral migrants are not keeping to the laws within the ECOWAS agreement. In other to address the challenge of cross-border pastoral mobility as stated in the problem statement of the study, a survey research design was adopted by the researcher as it is appropriate in capturing information from a large population. The researcher adopted a population size of 300 from which a simple random sampling technique was adopted to arrive at the sample population, the method of data analysis was the percentage method and chi-square statistics as it was most appropriate. The data which was collected with the aid of a questionnaire was analyzed using statistical package for social science (SPSS 21). From the data analyzed it was concluded that the nature of cross-border transhumance into Nigeria is determined by various socio-economic, political, climatic and ecological push factors arising within these countries of origin, as well as corresponding pull factors within Nigeria. The study recommends that Government should also in line with international best practices prevail on owners of cattle to establish ranches being what is obtainable all over world.



1.1 Background of the study

Pastoralism is both a production system and a way of life that is part of our shared global heritage; cherished by many, feared by others and misunderstood by the majority. Pastoralism is practiced on more than one-third of the world’s land surface by up to 500 million people, although this population estimate is highly dependent on how different countries classify and count pastoralists. The labels vary from place to place, and pastoralists may be known as, inter alia, shepherds, herders or nomads (McGahey et al., 2014). A common feature of the different names given to pastoralists is the emphasis on mobility. This can mean mobility over short distances, for example, between mountain tops and valleys following seasonal cycles, or between adjacent pastures as part of a system of rotation. Consequently, there is a negative perception of pastoralists; in the frequent violent conflicts with agricultural farmers in Oke-Ogun, the pastoralists are often blamed for problems related to crop damage, farming along cattle routes, and access to water. As Tukur (2013) has summarized the issue, more often than not nomadic Fulani herders are perceived to be prone to violence. The tendency to blame nomadic herders for the problems they bring as an occupational group is reinforced by perspectives like the ‘cattle complex’ and the ‘tragedy of the commons’ in the academic research on pastoralism. The cattle complex concerns environmental damage that harms pastoral societies; the environmental damage is attributed to inefficient traditional methods of raising livestock, and herders’ penchant to keep large number of animals beyond their economic and reproductive functions. The tragedy of the commons suggests that pastoralists, primarily driven by self-interest in their use of land and water resources, overgraze the land; in pursuing their immediate interests, they compromise the long-term interests of all grazers (Iro, 2015). The tendency to simply blame pastoralists from these perspectives obscures the multiple meanings cattle have for pastoralists, and how the choices they make are informed by the survival strategies of pastoralist households. Closely associated with this is the tendency to see nomadic Fulani herders as the primary perpetrators of rural banditry, including cattle rustling. The fact that Fulani nomads are familiar with the forest tracts tends to reinforce that perception. There are documented instances of pastoralists who resort to rustling after losing cattle to disease, inclement weather, and violence; there also are Fulani nomads active in the international syndicate of cattle rustlers. Fulani herdsmen, however, are also victims of the illicit transactions (IRIN, 2013). Nigeria is a classical example of the security challenges that cross-border mobility pose. Long before now, transhumant Fulanis have been about their activities without incidents of communal clashes being widely reported. Incidents usually associated with transhumance are cattle rustling and banditry. But the new climate of religious fundamentalism has opened up a new vista of security issues associated with transhumance. Focus is now on insurgency and terrorism. The ECOWAS protocol on free movement was put in place long before the EU Shengen protocol which was especially designed to facilitate free movement among European citizens. According to Shettima and Tar (2008), the activities of the cross-border pastoralist include the movement of their cattle to graze on farmlands which belong to crop farmers, while the farmers require from the pastoralist protein in the form of dairy products that are needed for their day-to-day consumption and manure to fertilize their fields. Similarly, Monod, (2018) noted that the survival of the pastoralist group is formed under interaction with sedentary farmers. Thus, it becomes apparent that the interdependent linkage flows as each group needs water, land, fodder and other land use for their economic activities. Unfortunately, this form of relationship that has existed centuries back has been truncated with many disputes arising across the regions that have grown into widespread violence, death, and internal displacement of persons. While the bulk of literature and scholarly discussion maintain that increasing conflict is connected to the activities of the herdsmen in the quest for grazing pasture for their livestock deliberately, or unaware causing damages to the farmer’s crops as well as cattle theft and rustling by communities. It is still insufficient to accept that factors stated above are enough to escalate the conflicts between herders and farmers because all these factors associated with the increase in conflicts are not new. It is against this backdrop that this study become pertinent to examine the security challenge that cross-border pastoral mobility has possed to Oke-Ogun community in Oyo state as the study area shares a common boundary republic of Benin and some Northern state in Nigeria. Republic of Benin and Kwara state in Nigeria are the neighboring town to Oke-Ogun, and this two community are the major pastoralist. That notwithstanding occupational mobility, cross-border pastoralism has added insult to injury due to the porous nature of Nigeria borders. This has pose a serious security challenge to the residents of Oke-Ogun.


The constant farmers-herders conflict in Nigeria is not a new phenomenon, most especially in the Northern part of the country. However, what it is relatively new is now the many news headlines about farmer’s herders’ conflict in the states and regions, in particular, the South West part of the country. In the past, many people have argued around the narrative of religion, land ownership rights, political power rotation, ethnicity and indigene settlers’ arguments in the Northern part of Nigeria that are dominated by Hausa-Fulani ethnic group competing with other minority groups. Such cannot be said of the Southern parts of Nigeria that are predominantly Christians. Although, in the past decades, across Nigeria most especially in the Southern Western part of the country, the Fulani settler and their families were accepted and permitted into the host communities due to the cordial relationship between the sedentary farmers and herders (Osaghae &Suberu, 2005; Genyi, 2014). Following the recent increase in the conflict, the relationship between both groups had deteriorated (Chigozie, 2012). This in turn has escalated beyond headers and farmers conflict. This is due to the fact that most of cross-border pastoralist are from other countries who has not settle in the region to understand the accord that enable peaceful co-existence between farmers and headers. This lack of understanding has birth all kind of security issues in the study area (Oke-Ogun) ranging from destruction of crops, cattle rustling loss of lives and properties worth million if not billions of naira let to talk of the proliferation of other benedictory under the umbrella of headers farmers crisis.  It is against this backdrop that this study become pertinent to investigate the challenges that cross-border pastoral mobility has pose to the people of Oke-Ogun.


The study has one major objective which is further divided into specific and general objective; the general objective is to examine the security challenges associated with cross-border pastoralism in Oke-ogun in Nigeria within 2015-2019. The specific objectives are;

  1. To examine the effect of cross-border pastoral mobility and the security challenges it poses in the area within the study time frame
  2. To ascertain if there is any significant relationship between cross-border mobility and security challenges in Oke-Ogun Nigeria
  • To examines the role of government in curtailing the security challenges posed by cross-border pastoral mobility in Oke-Ogun
  1. To examine the impact of cross-border pastoral mobility on farmers header crisis in Oke-Ogun.
  2. To proffer suggested solution to the identified problem


The following research questions were formulated by the researcher to aid the completion of the study;

  1. Does cross-border pastoral mobility poses security challenges in the study area?
  2. Is there any significant relationship between cross-border mobility and security challenges in Oke-Ogun Nigeria?
  • Has the government done enough to curtailing the security challenges posed by cross-border pastoral mobility in Oke-Ogun?
  1. Is there any impact of cross-border pastoral mobility on farmer’s header crisis in Oke-Ogun?


The following research hypotheses was formulated by the researcher to aid the completion of the study;

H0: there is no significant relationship between cross-border mobility and security challenges in Oke-Ogun Nigeria

H1: there is a significant relationship between cross-border mobility and security challenges in Oke-Ogun Nigeria

H0: the government has done enough to curtailing the security challenges posed by cross-border pastoral mobility in Oke-Ogun

H2: the government has not done enough to curtailing the security challenges posed by cross-border pastoral mobility in Oke-Ogun


The conflicts between herders and farmers are increasing in Nigeria, so there are a need and concern to address this problem. With the increasing number of conflicts in different regions of Nigeria, it has become an urgent task in understanding the causes, the change in the relationship between both farmers and herders. The findings of this research will contribute to existing literature on farmers-herders conflict as the subject is very critical to the sustainability of peace in Nigeria. It will serve to add to the body of knowledge. Also, this increasing conflict, which has been a significant source of insecurity in Nigeria is gradually shifting attention from the Boko Haram rebellion as most study has been focusing on the issue of Boko Haram in the North with little or no attention to the predicament of the people of Oke-Ogun. Hence, it is apt for policy experts to examine and consider possible policies recommendation towards addressing the conflict. It has been accepted that cross-border mobility poses a serious security challenge as the conflict is ubiquitous and solution to its occurrence is essential. The research will further increase the body of knowledge in the field of social science.


The scope of the covers cross-border pastoral mobility and security challenges in Oke –Ogun, Nigeria 2015-2019. Oke Ogun (Oke Ogun) is a populated place (class P – Populated Place) in Oyo State (Oyo), Nigeria (Africa) with the region font code of Africa/Middle East. It is located at an elevation of 188 meters above sea level and its population amounts to 174,152. Its coordinates are 7°19’60” N and 4°4’0″ E in DMS (Degrees Minutes Seconds) or 7.33333 and 4.06667 (in decimal degrees). Its UTM position is FJ11 and its Joint Operation Graphics reference is NB31-03.
Current local time is 08:42; the sun rises at 07:46 and sets at 19:53 local time (Africa/Lagos UTC/GMT+1). The standard time zone for Oke Ogun is UTC/GMT+1 In 2019 DST starts on – and ends on A Populated place is a city, town, village, or other agglomeration of buildings where people live and work. The study was limited by some factors which were out of the researcher’s control;

AVAILABILITY OF RESEARCH MATERIAL: The research material available to the researcher is insufficient, thereby limiting the study

TIME: The time frame allocated to the study does not enhance wider coverage as the researcher has to combine other academic activities and examinations with the study.

FINANCE: The finance available for the research work does not allow for wider coverage as resources are very limited as the researcher has other academic bills to cover.



A pastoral lifestyle is that of shepherds herding livestock around open areas of land according to seasons and the changing availability of water and pasture

Pastoral Mobility

Pastoral mobility is a means to balance variability in dry land resources; hence, ‘nature’ is the point of departure. Another knowledge system is local pastoral knowledge


Security is freedom from, or resilience against, potential harm caused by others. Beneficiaries of security may be of persons and social groups, objects and institutions, ecosystems or any other entity or phenomenon vulnerable to unwanted change


This research work is organized in five chapters, for easy understanding, as follows

Chapter one is concern with the introduction, which consist of the (overview, of the study), statement of problem, objectives of the study, research question, significance or the study, research methodology, definition of terms and historical background of the study. Chapter two highlight the theoretical framework on which the study its based, thus the review of related literature. Chapter three deals on the research design and methodology adopted in the study. Chapter four concentrate on the data collection and analysis and presentation of finding.  Chapter five gives summary, conclusion, and recommendations made of the study.