Rotimi Akeredolu, governor of Ondo state, says Nigerians expect President Muhammadu Buhari to make a strong statement on criminality involving armed herders.
In January, Akeredolu had issued an eviction order to herders occupying forest reserves in Ondo, stating that the decision became necessary to address insecurity in the state as a result of incessant abductions.
The Ondo governor had also condemned the comment by Bala Mohammed, his Bauchi counterpart, on the latter’s insistence that herdsmen needed to carry AK-47.
Speaking when he featured on a Channels Television programme on Monday, Akeredolu said a strong comment by the president on illegal bearing of arms will contribute towards improving the security situation in the country.
During the interview, Akeredolu added that it would be wonderful if the president could also insist on the prosecution of persons found with unlicensed arms.
“If the president decides that he’s going to make any statement, what all of us will expect from Mr president clearly, is for him to at least come out and let Nigerians know, as we know, that he does not support criminality. That is the essence of it. That is enough,” he said.
“The president has said before that if you find anybody with arms that are unlicensed, they should arrest them. That will be a wonderful statement again.”
He also said it would be beneficial to the country, if Buhari would come out to urge security agents to enforce no-grazing laws.
“Everybody in the north, has said ‘no’ to open grazing. Most of us have said so. Let us make a pronouncement on it, then the laws can follow. Laws have been made in a few states, ‘no to open grazing’, and that arms and ammunition must be lawful. If you are not lawfully in possession of such arms and ammunition, then you cannot carry them; the police must arrest,” he added.