A renowned Islamic scholar, Ahmed Muhammad Gumi has urged the federal and state governments to grant amnesty to repentant bandits, saying that there will be serious bloodshed and merciless killings if the government and security agencies continue to engage the bandits on operation fire-for-fire.
Addressing newsmen at the chamber of the Government House in Gusau, the state capital, sheikh Gumi explained that the late President Musa Yar’Adua granted amnesty to militants in the South-South zone and went extra mile to create the ministry of Niger Delta Affairs which sheikh Gumi said calmed down the tensed situation.
“Negotiations remain the best option for conflict resolution. Negotiations settled the grievances of the militants in the South-South so president Buhari should borrow from that ideology to end terror attacks in his own government,” sheikh Gumi added.
According to Sheikh Gumi, almost all the heinous crimes in Nigeria are being perpetrated by the unemployed youths who have no defined means of livelihood for a number of years, pointing out that a hungry man is an angry man.
The Islamic scholar who visited some of the bandits dens and hideouts in Zamfara state said that the Fulani unrepentant bandits tabled some of their grievances which they said have not been addressed by the state government.
He said that the Fulani unrepentant bandits demanded for justice in dealing with the Fulani people, saying that both the security agencies and the outlawed Yansakai members have classified the Fulani people as third-class citizens in a country that belongs to every body.
The Islamic scholar explained that the Fulani unrepentant bandits also lamented that mere seeing any Fulani herdsman with a car or motorcycle has become a serious crime against the security agencies and the outlawed Yansakai members as they would seize the car or motorcycle from the Fulani herdsmen describing them as bandits or kidnappers.
Sheikh Gumi noted that the same Fulani unrepentant bandits also complained that during their meetings with the state government on peace accord and reconciliation, all the promises that were made by the state government did not reach the Fulani herdsmen as the kind gestures were being hijacked by the middle men between the Fulani herdsmen and the state government.
“In some of our communities, there is no potable drinking water, no accessible road, no good health care delivery service or any form of social facility and until the state government addresses these problems, we will not embrace the peace accord and reconciliation” the unrepentant bandits lamented.
The Islamic scholar, therefore, called on the state government to as a matter of urgency ensure judicious distribution of any right that belongs to the Fulani people in the state, stressing that hijacking of their rights will aggravate the already existing tension in the state.
“There is nowhere that peace can reign without justice and if there is justice, the federal and state governments would not have been wasting huge amount of money to quell banditry in the state.”