The prevalent debates surrounding the activities of killer herdsmen and alleged Fulani bandits has continued to meet with lots of mixed reactions. While some factions of people seem to whip up sentiments and support for them and in fact making suggestions and proposal for their welfare others who are obviously enraged with their nefarious activities so far beg to differ and has developed series of counter criticisms to endure they are properly and constantly brought to justice.
However, an advocate and outspoken voice so far in support of the Fulanis/ herdsmen’s acclaimed Nigeria bandits, in the person of Abubakar Gumi, who also happens to be a prominent Islamic Cleric, has reiterated that Fulani herdsmen involved in banditry are victims of circumstance.
The sheikh while speaking in an interview on the popular TV programs Politics Today on Channels Television News, on Monday 22 February 2021, held onto his previous opinion and position on the dire situation, emphasizing his sympathy and support for the herdsmen.
Recall that the cleric has earlier expressed his thoughts and advocated for Nigeria bandits to be granted amnesty after meeting them in the bush.
“When I listened to them, I found out that it is a simple case of criminality which turned into banditry, which turned into ethnic war, and some genocide too behind the scene; people don’t know,” he said.
Gumi: Nigeria Bandits are ‘Peaceful And Humble People’
He further tried to explain that; “these Nigeria Bandits are indeed ‘Peaceful And Humble People’, “In as much as one would own up to the fact that there is no excuse for any crime; nothing can justify crime, and they are committing crime,” the Nigeria bandits were forced into criminality.
“I think it is a population that is pushed by circumstances into criminality.
“And this is what we should look at, let’s remove the pressure, let’s remove the things that made them into criminals because we have lived thousands of years without any problems with the nomadic herdsmen. They are peaceful people. But something happened that led them to this.”
According to Gumi, the herdsmen-bandits are engaged in an ethnic war against other peoples, including the sedentary Fulani. The solution, he added, was dialogue.
“It is a complex issue that Nigerians need to understand,” “The solution is very simple, but it’s not military hardware. The solution is dialogue and teaching.
“These people are acting with natural instincts, not special knowledge. And they don’t have any ambition or anything. They don’t have a vision of the future. They are talking about existence; their livelihood was destroyed because the cattle rustling that was going on for a long time, they are the first victims of it.
It remains a fact if dialogue can go a long way with the way things have already deteriorated, in the opinion of many.
Peace, security and safety is what many Nigerians citizens, demand from the president of the federation and many has insisted that peaceful dialogue is a beautiful way to start the process.
Gift Joseph Okpakorese