Northern elders applaud Sheik Gumi for taking the step to end banditry in Nigeria… reiterates support for Buhari’s administration

The Coalition of Northern Elders for Peace and Development has applauded the renowned Islamic Scholar and preacher, Sheik Abubakar Gumi for taking practical steps aimed at ending the menace of banditry in Northwest and part of North Central through negotiation with the armed bandits.

The elders also reiterated their unflinching support to President Muhammadu Buhari’s-led administration.

The coalition in a statement signed by its National Coordinator, Engr. Zana Goni appealed to Nigerians to be patient and believe in the Buhari government, saying the president is taking steps to address the current challenges especially the security threats.

The Northern elders also berated stakeholders in the region over their long silence in the face of unbearable criminal acts by herdsmen across the country, thereby denting the image of the region.

The elders also backed the clamour by the Igbos to be included in the country’s security management, asking kinsmen to support the move such could give the South East a sense of belonging thus deflating the tension arising from the activities of some elements in the region.

They particularly appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to consider the issue as that of national importance by immediately reviewing recent appointments of service chiefs to right the perceived wrong.

According to the statement, “We are deeply concerned about the wanton and brazen criminal activities of some of our Fulani kinsmen and the shameful loud conspiracy of silence by some of our notable northern elders and stakeholders that should have risen up to speak against the evil acts.

“These despicable acts by some of our kinsmen masquerading as herdsmen is highly condemnable and we must begin to speak out against them now if we must be taken seriously in Nigeria.

“The activities of some of these criminal herders started like a joke and because we kept quiet which showed that we were rather supporting them, they heightened their actions which have regrettably gotten us in this present situation”.

The elders added that, “In every part of the country now, Fulanis have been tagged as the people behind Kidnappings, armed robbery and other violent crimes.

“While we must acknowledge that they may be some local collaborators, Fulanis remain the masterminds and arrowheads in most criminal activities going on across the country today. This is highly unacceptable and must be stopped now”.

They said that the unhealthy drum of war that is currently raging in Nigeria today is greatly caused by the insecurity perpetrated by actions of Fulani herdersmen and the continued silence of northern elite.

The elders noted that threat to peace anywhere is a threat to peace everywhere and that is why they are speaking out now.

“We strongly commend some of our Northern clerics who have risen to this occasion and have started speaking out to the Fulani community, especially sheik Gumi. This singular act and many more is commendable and should be sustained,”they said.

“Almost all the states of the federation have had their own fair share of Fulani atrocities. Is Fulani the only tribe in Nigeria?

“We must know that this country belongs to all of us and every state and person of the federation has equal stake in the Nigerian project. No single state, person, tribe or religion has the right to intimidate another,” the group said.

The elders further said: “We also wish to draw the attention of the our Northern elders to the continual injustice being done to the Igbo nation over the just concluded appointments of service chiefs in the country where no Igbo man from South East was appointed in a two straight appointments of service chiefs.

Dr Ahmad Abubakar Gumi NigPilot“These appointments to us, remain insensitive and remain unfair until Mr President exercises his discretion by reviewing it to include at least an Igbo officer from South East“.

The group observed that Igbos are more Nigerians and more reliable than most tribes in Nigeria, adding, “Go to any state and village in Nigeria, you will see an Igbo man doing business there”.

They queried, “How can we continue to accuse such people of not believing in Nigeria? Is it because of the actions of one fugitive known as Nnamdi Kanu and his group, IPOB, and which notable groups, leaders and stakeholders have all come out to denounce several times?”

The Northern elders concluded that they believe it is nepotism that is playing out against the Igbos and they appeal to President Buhari to write his name in gold by correcting these wrongs against the South East.

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